Monday, January 4, 2016

Day 362 - Gott Nytt År! (Happy New Year!)

Hej everbody! 

Wow it feels like a while since I have written a letter! Hope everyone had a great Christmas and a Happy New Year! Things are going great here in Göteborg and we are continuing to work our rumpor off! It is still super cold here but we don't let that stop us! We actually got a bit of snow this week! Finally! Buuuut by now it's all melted. But it's all good. I'm super happy that I had at least a couple days with snow. Pretty much everywhere north of here has snow, so that's pretty lame. But anyways this week was good! Missionary work is definitely a struggle sometimes but it is definitely worth it. I would say that a mission is more of a blessing than it is a sacrifice. I will be eternally grateful for what I have learned and experienced on my mission. I have learned things and developed attributes that I will use the rest of my life. A mission has also strengthened my testimony in Christ and in the restored gospel tremendously. This church is absolutely 100% true and there is nothing in this world that can or will change that. 

This week was full of finding and teaching and all that jazz! We also were able to spend New Year's Eve with a member family which was super fun! We had an overall great week! I am so sorry but I don't have a whole lot of time today. We have a lot to take care of right now and a lot is going on right now so my mind is super scattered but I will try to update you on as much as I can! 

On Monday last week, we were able to meet with Juha and we taught him the first half of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Faith and Repentence. It went really well. He is doing well and progressing. The spirit was strong and it was a good experience. Afterwords, Juha bought us lunch which was super nice of him! That evening, we were able to teach Peter, the man from Lebannon. He is doing so well and reading the Book of Mormon but he doesn't seem to be getting an answer. We taught him about Faith and Repentence also. It was a really great lesson and the spirit was definitely there. We taught him in the YSA center which was super cozy. Afterwords, the YSAs had an institute activity and Peter stayed and had a great time! His friend from California told him to find YSA and get involved with that so he loves YSA! We had a message about new year resolutions and we watched the Mormon Message about it! If you haven't seen it go watch it! It is super good! It is about looking forward and not looking back! It talks a little bit about the story of Lot's wife. Here is a little bit out of a talk from Elder Holland about that story:

 "The start of a new year is the traditional time to take stock of our lives and see where we are going, measured against the backdrop of where we have been. We read in Luke 17:32, "Remember Lot's wife." Why did the Lord say this and what did He mean? The Lord told Lot and his family to flee the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah due to the wickedness that prevailed in the cities. The Lord said, "Escape for thy life, look not behind thee.....; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed." (Genesis 19:17) With less than immediate obedience and more than a little negotiation, Lot and his family ultimately did leave town, but just in the nick of time. At daybreak the next morning the scriptures tell us, "The Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven; And he overthrew those cities." (Genesis 19:24-25)
"With the Lord's counsel, "look not behind thee" ringing clearly in her ears, Lot's wife, the record says, "looked back," and she was turned into a pillar of salt. There is much to be gained about understanding "looking back and looking ahead." One of the purposes of history is to teach us the lessons of life. So, apparently what was wrong with Lot's wife was that she wasn't just looking back; in her heart she wanted to go back. It would appear that even before they were past the city limits, she was already missing what Sodom and Gomorrah had offered her. It is also possible that Lot's wife looked back with resentment toward the Lord for what He was asking her to leave behind. So, it isn't just that she looked back; she looked back longingly. Her attachment to the past outweighed her confidence in the future. The past is to be learned from but not lived in. We must remember that faith is always pointed toward the future. Faith always has to do with blessings and truths and events that will yet be efficacious in our lives. Lot's wife doubted the Lord's ability to give her something better than she already had. "To yearn to go back to a world that cannot be lived in now; to be perennially dissatisfied with present circumstances and have only dismal views of the future; to miss the here-and-now-and-tomorrow because we are so trapped in the there-and-then-and-yesterday--these are some of the sins of Lot's wife."Paul talked of his conversion to Christ, "This one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Jesus Christ." (Philippians 3:13-14) So, as we move forward in 2016 I say to each of you, "Remember Lot's wife." Faith is for the future. Faith builds on the past but never longs to stay there. Faith trusts that God has great things in store for each of us and that Christ truly is the "high priest of good things to come."

On Tuesday, we had a really cool experience. We were doing some swing by's and we decided to swing by a man that the elders before us had tracted before. His name is David and when the last missionaries came by, he was busy and said that they could come back another time. So we came around and knocked this week. About a month after the other elders went by. We knocked on his door and he invited us right in. That seldom happens here in Sweden so we were super surprised. We were excited and went in and sat down. David is from Africa and plays semi-pro soccer for Sweden. He lived in Cameroon I think for awhile and played soccer there and actually met the missionaries there. He was taught a lot and had a Book of Mormon. He actually knew a bit about the church. He was really good friends with one of the missionaries there. And when he was leaving Cameroon, the missionaries told him that "no matter where you go, the missionaries there will find you. And you have to promise to let them in." So that was cool. He also lost contact with those missionaries and lost his Book of Mormon on the way here. So he happily let us in. He is so cool! We taught him a little bit about the Restoration because we didn't have so much time but he said he would love to continue meeting and that he would love to come to church on Sunday. It was so cool! It was a testimony builder to me that no matter where people go, the restored gospel will always find them. I know that David is definitely prepared to accept the gospel and I know that the Lord led us to him at that time. It is so cool how the Lord doesn't let any of his sheep go lost. I am excited to continue to work with David and help him understand and receive the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.

Later this week, we met with probably the most humble and happy man I have ever met in my life. He is blind. His name in Inge Nordås and he has been blind his whole life. He has never seen color or light or anything. But yet he has the best attitude and outlook on life than anyone I have met before. He is a less active member in the ward and he struggles with drinking coffee. But the whole time we were there we were just laughing and having fun together. I really hit me hard how blessed I am in my life. Even the fact that I can see. I bet not too many people think about that. I know I didn't. I think sometimes we don't realize how blessed we really are. Take a second and think about how many blessings you have, it will brighten up your day. Also, it really showed me that no matter what trials or challenges you have, you can always find happiness and hope and love through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Sorry I am ending this so shortly but we have to go. I am so grateful for each and every one of you and all you do for me. Thank you for all the prayers and emails and thoughts. I want you all to know that I am doing well and that I am happy and that I am LOVING my mission. I am really becoming the man my Heavenly Father wants me to become. 

Know that I love you all!


 Äldste Bailey


  1. So great to see how the progress is going with you and your mission work. I hope that you feel the new year and all its opportunities that comes along with it. I pray that this year will be great for you and that we have the chance to meet up sometime. Love, Pia

  2. Sounds like you are having a great time on your mission. Keep up the good work. Vi ses

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