Monday, October 24, 2016

Approaching Lightspeed Towards Great Things

Well... this week was great:) It was pretty all over the place but that was a good thing. We had a lot of noteable experiences and adventures so... I'll shoot them off in backwards old Germanic alphabetical order:

Monday and tuesday:

We had the chance to be on splits up there with Elders Halversen and Jakob Jensen. ​
​That was way fun! We did a ton of finding and had a lot of time to just work. We also played a little. The pics of the cannons and stuff are from WWII when the Germans invaded Denmark so they are actually German guns. Fun knocking dialogue for you all:

I knock. The myster man behind the door says "hello?".

Me: hello?
Mystery man: who is it?
*he knocks on the door this time*
Me: who is it? *then break down laughing*
Mystery guy: walks away from the door.

hahaha one of the funniest doors I've knocked. Elder Halversen and I were in a pretty humorus mood after that so every door soomething funny seemed to occur. Wayyy fun knocking sesh.

We were on splits again with Elders Peel and Nielsen on Wednesday. I got to be with Elder Peel who is pretty awesome. He is a pretty fresh young gun from Paradise Utah and he is a hard worker. We did a good bit of finding and had a lot of success with that! We knocked two doors in a row and were let in and we gave them both Books of Mormon. Granted, one of the people that let us in might not have been all there but it was good just the same! He is named Keld and he just yelled in English "that is good" or "that is bad" depending on what we said. It was a pretty funny lesson to teach because we would say something like "Jesus loves us and we believe...." and he would just yell way loud haha. He totally understood us on everything we said but I feel like he is pretty forgetful. I don't know but just another fun snippet out of our finding efforts.

Was over before it started.... we had district meeting and then an appointment with L* which went pretty well except we figured out that right now is really the time in her life to make the important changes as far as we can tell. She is a wayy awesome girl but she isn't totally searching. No worries though... it takes a couple touches to sink in:)

Friday and Saturday:
We went on splits again with the Elder Murphy and Elder McDougall in Copenhagen. WE basically just went hard finding on the streets in the rain. I though it was actually pretty enjoyable and it went pretty well. 

Alright and hold it down: So we went to an all you can eat running sushi bar and here are is the approximate damage 4 Americans were able to cause:
4000 kroner worth of sushi which is equivalent to 585  or so american dollars approximately 15 rolls each (they came on small plates with two pieces to a plate so its a rough estimate based off of the menu)
150 plates between the four of us
37 ish plates each.

That was most definitely the second best sushi experience of my life, only topped by eating PK sushi with Dad until we just about died. But same principle both times haha.

I will tell you though, contacted for that last hour with a brick of fish and rice in the stomach is pretty hard. This scripture helped though :

"And will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders (stomachs), that even you cannot feel them upon your backs (stomachs), even while you are in bondage... ye may know of surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions." (mosiah 24:14)

I won't count that one in as the spiritual thought though haha....

On Saturday we finished out splits and then took the wrong train on a fun 2 hour detour to north Sjaelland... so it took extra long to get home and by the time we had gotten home it had been seven and a half hours... rough haha

We were able to meet with Y* today and we had a pretty cool lesson on the restoration of the gospel. I loved being able to teach with Elder Bennett such a powerful lesson and I am greatful for his ability to teach very well because we were really able to help her understand the importance and pertinence of the message we bring. In the end we committed her to praying and reading every day to find out for herself if it is ture so we are super stoked:) just a great day!

Now comes the spiritual thought

"We do not have to cry unto him with many words. We do not have to weary him with long prayers. What we do need, and what we should do as Latter-day Saints, for our own good, is to go before Him often, to witness unto Him that we remember Him and that we are willing to take upon us His name, keep His commandments, work righteousness; and that we desire his Spirit to help us...What do you pray for? You pray that God may recognize you, that he may hear your prayers, and that he may bless you with his Spirit" Joseph F. Smith

This is something that really impressed me in one of my studies and I found it in the talk "priesthood and person prayer" by Henry b. Eyring. I've really come to appreciate how important it is to build our relationship with our Heavenly Father throughout my mission and I have learned incredible amounts from prayer. It certainly is one of the greatest truths of the gospel that we need not only believe the words that come from around us but rather from above. I say that Not to say that we cannot be helped by those we love but to point back to our best source, Our father in Heaven. I would challenge everyone to ponder on the role of prayer in their life and reflect on their relationship with our Heavenly Father because i know the strength that comes from humbly kneeling before the Lord and directing our hearts heavenward.

I know what I believe and I believe what I know, that Heavenly Father is here for all of us. Just reach out.

Well have a great week people:)

Ældste Jeppson

ps.. transfers are next week so I might email from another different Danish computer next time.

coming soon to theaters.


Ældste  j


My son and I 

Wehcome hahahah

The crew for Blitz Split

​Blitz splits dinner time... snobrød and hot dogs:)

Monday, October 17, 2016

Bennett's Berrys on Tour

When I was back in Odense and Elder Bennett was in Svendborg, we planned a fake music group called Bennetts Berrys so that we could say they sponsored me and Elder Erickson's album "Odense Underground Hymn revival." Its fun the group is almost fully back together (rip Elder Hartmann...)
This we was great! I really am just feeling it right now:) There is nothing more satisfying than fufilling something greater than yourself and at the same time, nothing more fun. I think if i had to go back in time 3 years to pitch a mission solely off of the expereince,this week would have been a great week to sell:)
The work here in Århus is going off right now. We have a ton of really awesome individuals who all have various degrees of desire to know the truth.
We found 4 new freinds who all want to hear the good word:)
First off is Juan #2. hehe He hails from Panama and is such an baller! He was way good buds with the missionaries back in the dayand they played a lot of football americano and basketball. He is about 40ish and is absolutely full of good vibes. WE were on splits with the Ålborg elders so i wasn't at the appointment,  but he had us over for dinner and according to the mouth of Elder Bennett he is mega believing! He got wayyyy hyped on the Book of Mormon and asked for one in espanol so we are super stoked on Juan number juan and number two ( Haha)
The we found Frank. Frank is a way cool brotha from Nigeria and has live in Copenhagen for sometime and moved to Århus 9 days ago. It was really neat because we prayed forto go out and find someone who is looking to come to church and we found Frank about 20 steps down the path. Frank is way believing and loves to talk about things that we build his faith. We met with him Friday and Saturday to talk but we kinda rocked his world with the plan of salvation. Meaning, we were dicussing Gods plan for us and we got to a certain point in the lesson were he said" I am going to need some time to think about that-" So we sat in silence for 4 minutes and apparently that wasn't enough because he reallllly needed time I guess. So we invited him to study and pray about it and he said he might need a month haha. So Frank only goes at Frank speed.
Elder Bennett and Elder Whitaker found another guy named J* on splits. He is way awesome because he was stoked that there actually is a church that claims to have been restored after the period of apostasy. He is very well read on religion and  is very certain we as people were in deep need for a restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. So we are really looking forward to that lesson:)
Cool faith promoting story:
The fourth investigator we found is named J*. Before we knocked on his door, we had prayed to know where to go so that we find those that are willing to set the message of the restoration to the test. Well, if you really pay attetion to what you say in prayers, God is going to do it if we ask in faith and if it is in accordance with his plan. So we came to the first door and gave it a knock. J* opened, we introduced ourselves, and then he proceeded to let us right in. What resulted from knocking that door was a very intrigued J* and a powerful lesson about the restoration.I dont know if ive seen anyone so focused listening when telling of personal experiences and testimony. He was very intrigued when Elder Bennett and I shared our own personal stories about the spirit of God and how listening to it changed us. Basically, he is at a point where he wants something he can go all in with his faith on. Such a cool guy! And then to top off the appointment, he remembered an old neighbor he had who had taken the lessons in Austrailia and who wanted the missionaries to come and teach him again. Incredible:)
C* is progressing surely and steadily. She is hovering about right above frank speed but she really has sincere desire to read the Book of Mormon:)
Highlights from the week:
We had the Ålborg elders come down for pday before splits so that we could have a cill pday. We got invited by out Christian friends from the youth church in Århus to go play soccer fifa street edition. There are small soccer courts with walls and stuff around Denmarks in parks and schools and stuff. We played 6 americans vs 5 danes and we only lost by 2:) It was raining pretty good so it made it all the more classic danish fun :D
I had the chance to be on splits with elder Olsen from Sandy Utah. He is a way cool guy and we had a way great time together on splits! We had the opportunity to break into an apartment complex together. that sounds more intense than it was because the elevator is usually pin coded but a man walked out at the perfect time so we took a gamble and walked in. I know why they keep it locked... thats where all of the hardcore atheists were hiding haha. Man that was kind of a bummer knock sesh as far at the talking to people went. But i had a great time getting to know Elder Olsen and having fun with him:)

Started touring the districts to give trainings to the 3 districts in the zone. We started with our own district and had a really good meeting and then found our boy Frank. Probably the biggest point of Wednesday was that the Bible study we attend at the new covenant church  gave us, the 6 missionaries who come, to give a Mormon  night so to speak. We passed out 30 Book of Mormons to the congregation of mostly African descent and then taught a 15 minute run down on the first lesson and then turned it over for questions. I must say that the spirit of Erastus Snow lives on here in denmark Because that is the second time ive preached to over 30 people on my mission haha so great!
Went up to Ålborg to give the district meeting to that district. We talked about the Book of Mormon and why it is such and important tool:) Always a great topic.
We also taught Connie and had a pretty good lesson. She gave us some snacks as well and fun fact about Denmark, meat and cheese never go together. that also counts for salmon and cheese on a cracker. They will take it personally if you do it so do it behind closed doors;) hahaha
Friday: We went out to Skive to give district meeting to the midtjylland district and then we stayed the rest of the day to blitz the area. That baically means you take a bunch a missionarys and get them stoked on work and then turn them loose to go buck wild on one city:) We found 4 investigators total for Skive which is really good! Elder Beck and i were on splits and had a really cool expereince. I had been fasting to find someone in Skive during blitz splits. Well, we found someone:) It was really neat how the Lord blessed us because i could tell Elder Beck was a bit strained from what had happened recently in there area and that they hadnt really had a lot working out since it happened so it was really cool to get let in the door and teach a way cool young guy who was humble enough to listen to the words of two 19-20 yr old guys. :)
Taught the one and only Frank again:)
Successfully improved an arrangement of "Abide with me tis evening tide" for sacrament meeting to accompany sister Andrew:) So that was great. Then we went and did an improved finding block and found our boy Jonas (see above again). incredible:)
Today we are in Frederikshavn on Splits to boost the area up here:) It is good to be back. It has not changed one bit and it has really made me realize how fast time actually goes when you dial in, That was 9 months ago that i arrived... just wild

Spiritual thought:
In a talk given by the temple presidents wife at stake conference, she talked about how we all have five minutes to make a difference somewhere. This week I have been thinking about how i can render more charitable service to others and that i will always be able to find five minutes to do so. Here is how i figured to that conclusion... 

If the thing we call time is relative, ESPECIALLY to God, then we will have time. God is surely more concerned about the charitable service we render in his name than how fast we arrive to school or work or whatever. It will surely come back to bless us and then some. I had this impression during third hour of church (i really WAS trying to listen...) and it got me thinking a lot. I invite you to think about what you can do with five minutes.
Peace Love and chik-fil-a,
Ældste  j

Monday, October 10, 2016

All the Small Things

Missions are a just the greatest thing They are 98% hard, rain and sweat and bikes and being tired and sore and chasing busses and... i think you get the picture. But the accumulation of lessons learned and trials conquered and people helped and purposes fulfilled make up the 2% that makes it all worth it. And I would say, at least from my experience so far, that the two percent outweighs the 98 percent by a land slide. This week was an accumulation of little things that really spurred me to reflect on what this whole experience so far means to me... hence the opening line :)
Highlights coming at you quick:
Juan from Colombia: Still going strong! He was coming back from KBH this weekend so he wasnt able to make it home for our appointment so we moved it to this week:)
Juan from Panama: Wayyy awesome guy. Super lovable and he has super stong faith....pretty inspiring! We met him on a bus again ( I met him my second week in Århus) and he invited us out for dinner tonight so that will be cool!
C*: C* is still going strong! She is listening to the Book of Mormon on audio and she processed something like 15 chapters and had a bunch of questions. We taught a lot about the gospel of Jesus Christ but also got really in depth into the Chapter where it talks about the tree of life and the iron rod. Great stuff:) Elder Bennett called a way funny audible and decided to show a talk that is called "stay by the tree".... wayyy heavy talk. It is the one that throws down pretty hard and has the line "swan dive into Babylon!" in it haha. We had planned on showing a talk and had tentatively decided but he pulled it up because we had just talked about Lehi's dream. The problem was that neither of us had seen the talk.
I recommend that you preview things before you use them.... life lesson I guess. We had a pretty hard laugh though at the bus stop about it so no worries. She took it well:) haha
Y* : Y* is a way hip girl from London and is here studying journalism. Actually it is a cool story because Elder Bennett and I fasted for how we can raise the bar in our work because we have been let in a ton this week and have taught a lot of sit down lessons in other peoples homes but for some reason things don't stick. So we wanted to find people the lord would guide us to that would listen intently and sincerely. Well, it just so turns out that the first door we knocked was Y* and she told us that she was going to shower and clean her house but that we could come back in one hour. So we knocked around and then came back and taught her the whole plan of salvation. She was very into it and said she would give it a shot and pray about it:) Prayer and fasting works!

Other things:
On splits, Elder Erickson and I went out to a far away town called Trige on a prompting. We spent 2 hours there trying to figure out why the heck we felt we should go out there haha. We knocked a door we felt inspired to knock, which held people that weren’t interested but that referred us to the neighbour. So we knocked the neighbour and he laughed and said no. So we tried the other neighbor and he was a recluse with a cat... haha. So then we walked out to the literal sticks and tried to knock but it didn’t feel right so we went back to where we were. We tried to get more inspired so we went to a house next to the Trige church and tried that. No one was home. I remembered that Elder Erickson was talking about having ancestors from Århus area so we maybe thought we were supposed to find them in the church cemetery, So we looked at every possible match to no avail haha. Then we triend going to a store because it felt right and then it was closed.... I really think that the Lord was just testing us :)
After that though we missed our bus on the way to an eating appointment so we had to walk and find the other bus stop. We ended up taking a broken bike we had found on the side of the trail and we revived it and rode it to victory down a hill and to the bus stop. Good times:)  (Biking adventures: broken bike down hill, two missionaries, one bike :) )

We ate dinner with our friends from that one awesome night! Well actually only two of them from the OG night but they brought two more friends. So we are slowly becoming a part of that whole friend system haha its great. We had dinner with them and then we talked about every subject it felt like. It was a way cool experience though! They didn't want to get super into doctrine so we respected that and answered the surface level questions. Great night:) Then we walked through the second most dangerous part of Denmark in the dark at 9:00 pm so I am glad we didn't get shot. 

Elder Bennett might be cooler than me than me because he hiked Patagonia and has done some crazy awesome things. He has been recounting his adventures and I realized that humans need more adventures. Go adventure people:)
Spiritual thought:
Well this week I was thinking about how important it is to know God's character. that is a game changer in a lot of ways! Think about who he is i thought of some quotes from prophets and apostles that rang true:
The God of heaven is not a heartless referee looking for any excuse to throw us out of the game. He is our perfectly loving Father, who yearns more than anything else to have all of His children come back home and live with Him as families forever" -Elder Cornish
God loves us not because of what weve done, but because that is just who he is.
I hope you all ponder your relationship our Heavenly Father:) He loves you, and me, and all other people because we are his children. Period.
Fred Ud,
Ældste  j

Zone conference. Just a bunch of Aces and no less:)

Some crew photos

The Danish wilderness

Classic Danish House

A church from the Old Days

Zone conference

Elder Erickson

Elder Bennett

Monday, October 3, 2016

Personal Groves

That was the best into i could muster at the moment so I will just jump right into the recent highlights of my life here in the DK:
We had some cool stuff teaching wise this week. We taught C* again finally. She has gotten better and felt up to really setting herself into searching the gospel message. We mostly had a lesson that set up where she wants to go from here and what she wants to do and how we could help. She has a tough time reading because it is hard on her eyes so we brought the audio version of the Book of Mormon and she was pretty stoked so I think that will increase her willingness to read now:) We also showed the video " The Hope of God's light" on youtube and she really was touched by it I could tell. Great lesson:)

We came back to visit J* again becuase he has been having a really rough time with life and everything seems to be just going down the drain for him. He had called a couple times so we came to visit and we were surprised to find out that he had stopped drinking all by himself and was 6 days sober! That was huge considering that had been a lifetime habit. So we are going to try and help him work up the self confidence to do the same with smoking because it is realllly wrecking him physically. J* is the first and foremost reason among many of why I will never touch a cigarette. I don't know of a better way to take 30 years off your vitality... crazy stuff. But hope is there for him if he chooses to finally shake and move and do something about it.
We met with Juan again. Way great! He is such an awesome human and I really learn a lot when we talk with him. He really wants to change the world and make a difference which is awesome. We had a rather long lesson with him on the plan of salvation but it ended up going the way the Lord needed it to go. It was fun because we all just took turns going off on our rants in a circle. Elder Bennett would introduce something and the Juan would take it and go on his thought train with it and then I would bring it back to what Elder Bennett introduced and then reinforce it and tie it into all the way quality things Juan was saying, An upward spiral of sorts. But in the end we challenged him to really find out if this is what God wants for him in his life and he is very open to try it. He says that we all are led into the places we need to go because God knows everything and helps guide things to work together so hew basically said he beleives that God very well could have guided us to him. Que bueno:)
We worked again with our friend M*. He is a member I don't know if i mentioned that last time... But he is a way hip 28 year old Romanian guy with killer tastes in cool lifestyles. We had some great convos with him strengthening what he already knows and helping him with some concerns and stuff. He is a great guy.
We had a way sweet zone conference on the Book of Mormon. This week Elder Bennett and I went out into a cool little forest. President O'Bryant challenged all of us to go out and have our own Joseph Smith experience and pray about the truthfulness of the gospel as restored by Joseph Smith. So, we went out and found some spots alone (but within sight and sound of each other;) ) and took up the challenge. It was a great experience. The spirit was there and the truths of the restored gospel were confirmed to me that Joseph Smith truly is the prophet of the restoration and that a Loving Heavenly Father leads his church here through a prophet. It works wonderfully:)
General Conference: 

This year GConf has been fire so far! I say so far because when the Sunday noon session is streaming live, it is 10-12 oclock pm. So We are watching it in two hours with the Larsens and eating mexican food *fist pump*. My favorite talk so far had been by J. Devn Cornish. holy smokes he got to me!  I really was feeling the spirit the whole first session but when he came in with that... donezo. Such a good talk. And then the MoTab sang that version of "Be though my vision" and really nailed it. I've gotten progressively softer because there is more waterworks than the last conference every time. Maybe it is just that we look forward to it so much as missionaries but then again, i don't see why i couldn't have looked forward to it before like i do now. Anyhow.. favorite time in October:)

Other stuff:
We now have 10+ cacti of assorted small sizes. There is some kinda cactus craze and they sell them pretty much everywhere you are haha so you can get them dirt cheap (dirt included). Who knew succulents could be so hip?
We made a coffee cake, or conference cake as we call it in my family, in honor of General Conference! annnnnd we ate it within an hour.... no ragrats.
Elder Bennett and I have fun enlightening each other while we find/travel/whatever. Its really neat to have someone of high caliber that i can work with and work off of. He is really a sharp dude and its fun to pique his brain because i swear he knows EVERYTHING haha. Recently he has been enlightening me about stem cell research he did in a top lab with top scientists. Way cool stuff. I mean, this one time i built a shelf out of wood, but he is building potential body parts... i think. I'm still working on wrapping my mind around it but hopefully I will absorb that knowledge by the time we are through. Good stuff though. :) WE are having a beast time out here.
This morning as part of pday while our laundry was going, we played ball tag in the basement. The basement has no windows and is somewhat of a labyrinth of storage units and when the lights are off... that world doesn't really exist. So we basically just ran around in the dark and tried to peg each other with a soccer ball based off of echolocation that we didn't have. Fun times:) We stopped when Elder Erickson Beelined into the walll hahahaha. Such a funny thing to see in almost pitch black.

Spiritual thought:
This week during a lesson i started to realize that we would miss our bus which only comes one time every hour. I started to lose focus when the Holy Ghost popped the idea into my head that the 6a bus route (which I am not familiar with) would work just fine. So i thought it through half a second longer and then decided to trust it. After that lesson, all of our bus connections were perfectly fluid. We didn't even need to wait at the stop! My thought I would share is really work on learning how the spirit speaks to you and how God guides you personally. That has been something I have really focused on and I've come to really appreciate the word gift in "the gift of the Holy ghost" because it truly is something divinely given. :)

Also, for those of you who haven't done so recently, or who maybe haven't tried sincerely at all, I would challenge you to have your own Joseph Smith experience. You don't necessarily have to go out into the forest, but really try and set yourself in the same position as the young boy Joseph Smith and pray about the truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Elder Bennett in his wisdom says a lot, you get out what you put in, and I have thought about it in regards to prayers. If you sincerely really want an answer like you want that new car, dress or whatever, then you'll get a sincere answer.   I promise you he will answer! (I would recommend the forest if you have the chance)

Peace love and granola
Ældste  j

A yeti spotting... they are coming out early this year

Elder Erickson... nuff said

I did a "magic trick" to Elder Preece... bowls really do stick to the ceiling;) haha


I bought a papaya and a passionfruit cuz I figure South American
missionaries can't have all the fun :)