Monday, November 7, 2016

P-day 7: Day 55 - "I came to the field thinking I would be this steller, brave, animated missionary like Ammon or something, and instead I'm just me."

Nathanael's time to email us is around 6 am on Mondays with the new time change (he's 5 hours ahead of us now). That's early on a Monday morning, but it gets us up and running (okay maybe not running...). We are NOT early morning people. 

He's had another rough week but ironically sounds great. I keep telling him that everything he is feeling is normal and exactly how it is supposed to be, even though it's hard. Probably not what he wants to hear, but I think he is handling it well. And I'm super glad that he's understanding that being himself is the most powerful thing he can be. I think that his description of himself, instead of being like Ammon, actually does sound a lot like Ammon. I'm proud of him. Enjoy his letter!


Thanks so much for your emails (and I'm excited for those letters/packages too! Thanks!)!! I want to start out by saying this I think has maybe been the hardest week of my life. It's been incredibly, incredibly difficult, but very good. I'm starting to finally come up with some coping stuff I can do -- I like to take deep breaths, pray, write in my journal, sleep, etc, haha. My companion and I are getting along better. We had a really open talk on Saturday and that really helped me and him, I think. We've been talking a lot more and getting along better, and that alone is really really helping me. 

You have to tell Amy I've been using her UV pen like 3 times a day!! It's the best. No one buys botteled water here even though we're supposed to haha so I bought a couple and just fill them up with tap water and purify them. It's totally awesome and a life saver.

I've been discovering a few things about myself this week. I came to the field thinking I would be this steller, brave, animated missionary like Ammon or something, and instead I'm just me, but in a foreign country. It's much more normal here in certain ways than I anticipated. But I'm starting to learn that instead of beating myself up all the time for not being totally awesome, I just need to get up, do my work, and pray with all my heart that the Lord with make something with it, and with me. I was praying last night after feeling really discouraged because I have a lot of trouble opening my mouth and being bold. (I do ok but it's hard sometimes.) I felt the strongest and clearest impression that the Lord is going to remove that weakness from me, over time I'm sure, and help me to overcome that. So there you go. The Lord has been answering my prayers.

I think He gave me my MTC experience so I could learn this very principle (and it's very easy for me to forget) -- that we are not enough on our own, I'm certainly not enough here, but that the Lord will help us and be with us with more power and grace than we can possibly imagine. I've been reading the Isaiah chapters of the Book of Mormon and I've really been struck with how powerfully and totally the Lord rescues his covenant people, even (and especially!) when they are weak. I think that is one of the grand miracles of the atonement -- that thanks to the Lord's grace, we are utterly and completely saved if we will just turn to Him and rely on Him. He will help us. It's easy to forget but it is simply true.

I loved hearing that Cannon was fasting for me! :) You have to tell him I really appreciated it. I know that fast was powerful for me. I received specific answers to prayers yesterday and a whole lot of peace. Make sure to tell him that he made a huge difference for me. I can also feel your guys' prayers all the time -- thank you! I know you guys are always supporting me and thinking about me and I really appreciate and need that.

Good luck with the primary program mom!! You will be awesome. They are always so spiritual and cute, so I know it will be a success. You guys are awesome.

I want to talk about the people we're teaching. The work is so awesome!! We are teaching a lot of people but there are a few that really stand out. My favorite is this mother and son, Regina and Marcello. Marcello is 15 and really interested in our message. We've taught them the Restoration and the Book of Mormon. They haven't read much but Marcello prayed about it and got an answer, and he went to church yesterday!! He is so awesome. We are going to try to set a baptismal date with him this week. I have a really good feeling about him. Plus he reminds me of Tanner and Eric which is a plus. He's a really good guy. We are also teaching a husband and wife and his brother. Their names are Sicero, Aparecido and Creosa. They want to be baptized and we have a date marked, the 19th of November. We have taught them a bunch of lessons. They are having trouble making it to church and understanding everything but they want to keep learning more. It's very exciting. We're also teaching this husband and wife, Marco and Messa, who are really awesome. He wants to be baptized but is struggling to receive an answer about if the chuch is true. Craziness! I'm mostly just following my companion around right now and trying to chip in positively in the lessons, haha, but he's having me teach a lot. Usually he has to go back and re-explain what I said but I taught the Book of Mormon Saturday and he didn't have to, which made me feel good! I'm definitely seeing a lot of improvement in myself. I'm nowhere near where I want to be but I know the Lord is helping me. Most importantly, I can feel that He loves me and is proud of me, and is going to help me. So that's really, really good.

I've been feeling a little homesick and I miss you guys a lot, but it's nothing that's hindering my work. I really miss just sitting down with you guys and playing Xbox and Zelda and stuff, and just talking to you and so on. It's hard for me to believe that I've been away for 8 weeks. Time is slow and super fast all at once. It's hard to explain. I miss you guys but I know we will have the opportunity to be together again and it's all good.

How is everything? Everyone? I want to hear about all your stuff and stuff. Love you guys.

Elder Sederholm

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