The flight to Narvik went well, and I made it up here without any problems, which was really great. I got on a flight in Oslo, but it was delayed, so by the time I got to Bodø to switch flights, it was basically about to take off. I sprinted over to the other terminal, if it is even fair to call it a terminal, and ran down the stairs to board the plane. However, when I got to the end, I thought there was a mistake, because I found myself outside, and I didn't see a plane. Once I saw it, however, it was understandable that I almost missed it, because the plane was hardly bigger than a car. It was one of those tiny little puddle jumper planes, and they didn't even have room for my carry on, so they took it around back to the cargo hold. Quite a strange experience, but I am here and I am safe, so I am happy.
There isn't much going on in this area, and all we really do all day is contact on the streets and knock on doors, which does get a little long, but I am enjoying myself here. Church was really weird. There were five people in priesthood, including the missionaries, so that just turned into a strange discussion about catholic doctrine and the sacrament (they were all 60+, so I imagine that is exactly what high priests quorum would be like ;), and then in sacrament it was really small and different than I am used to. Everyone gives a talk basically every other week, including the missionaries, and I think I am going to be playing the piano every week while I am here. But I enjoy that. We meet in the Red Cross building, and the church only has it on Sundays. All the other days it is used for other things.
Member work is basically non-existent here, and we don't really go to the members' houses at all for dinner. It is an all-around different experience to be in the north. But I am enjoying myself so far. And Elder Gunther really enjoyed it up here, so I am looking forward to good things.
Next week we will be flying in to Trondheim for three days for zone conference, and then the week after that I will be flying down to Bodø to go on splits with the elders in my district, and then it is general conference- life is pretty exciting up here in the north. Hopefully when we have zone leader training meeting we will get to fly up to Tromsø as well. I am going to try to get to every part of the north while I am up here. Who knows when I will be able to come back?
I can't wait for general conference! Being on a mission, I look forward to general conference like I looked forward to the NBA championship or the end of school when I was back home. It is literally that exciting. We have prophets on the earth today, and they are all going to tell us what we need to hear at the same place in the same time! How exciting is that? I wish that I had paid more attention to general conference before, but you never really understand how great it really is... it's too bad.
It is good to hear that Ryan is doing well, I am continuing to pray for them and everyone back home. I am sure everything is going to be fine.
With all these new experiences and things in my life (and some help from my mom), my thoughts have turned to a talk by Elder Dube in the last general conference. His mother told him, “Edward, never look back. Look ahead at what we still have to do...”
Then he said:
“The Lord through His servants calls us to serve in various callings, which we accept with total commitment. When a release has been extended and a call in a different assignment has been issued, we joyfully accept it, knowing, as our forebearers knew, that “in the service of the Lord, it is not where you serve but how.”
I know that it is the same for us all in life, as we move to new experiences and trials. If we always remember to look at what we have learned and how we can use that to move forward in life, focusing on the Savior, we can never go wrong. I hope you all have a wonderful week!