Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Elder Jepsen: Mission Entry 104 - This is it--I am on a Mission!

I am on a mission and this is the best Christmas present I could wish for. But, there is another and not quite so common potential in Christmas presents:  When my family fist came to Denmark, I was very young and my parents had spent a lot of money on airfares and freight for us to come here. We didn't have much and this was the year when Christmas presents took on a whole new meaning to us all. Dad came up with a plan, shared it with us and we all agreed that it was a good thing. We were celebrating Christmas and all presents were to be to the Saviour, just like the wise men brought their presents to Jesus. Dad proceeded to give us examples of what kind of presents our Savior might appreciate. My sister suggested that all secretly bring a straw and place it in a little basket, representing the crib where Jesus would lay every time we had given our Lord Jesus a present that we thought would please Him. Throughout the month of December we all saw this crib slowly fill with straw and when it was time for Christmas it was as full as it could be. It was our best Christmas ever and by time Christmas came around, Dad had fashioned a special letter as if it came from Jesus, thanking us all for the many gifts and that He was very grateful that we had spent this Christmas thinking of Him, by serving His brothers and sisters. In return we received a small little porcelain platter marking the year, so that we would all remember Him and this Christmas, always.

This year I am the recipient of my personal gift from the Saviour and I couldn't be any happier. I am actually on a mission and I have looked forward to this time for as long as I remember. Because of US-visa problems I am still here in Denmark, no more than a half an hour from where I used to work and live but I am a real missionary on a real mission. A mission anywhere is still a mission and eventually "Elder Jepsen goes to Washington."

Although my trip to the mission field consisted of hopping on a local bus for a couple of blocks--I still feel plagued by jet-lag and have felt a constant need for sleep since the first day here. On the upside, I have no problem falling asleep at the end of the day. Starting a mission is hectic, demanding and hard work. This is why you didn't hear from me last week, sorry.

It's now fifteen days since I was set apart as an Elder, my trainer's name is Elder Tolman and I really enjoy working with him. We were both moved here to Frederiksberg at the same time and we're both new to this area. I love being a missionary and thanks to the Lord and Elder Tolman I already feel like I have been doing this all my life.

We are in the Frederiksberg area and congregation, the Mission office is in our area and we share an apartment and area with the Assistants to the President. We also have a married missionary couple in the area and two Sister missionaries.

Because we are close to both the mission office and the Temple, there is always a lot happening here and with the population density so high in our area, there is always lots of people to meet and teach. We have been spending much of our time teaching people in the streets and knocking on doors.

Yesterday, I had my first real teaching appointment. It actually came as a surprise to me when we were invited inside but it was very pleasant surprise. They were very friendly people, there was a welcoming and pleasant Spirit there and we taught them about the Book of Mormon. I am looking forward to meeting with these people again. I so enjoy being a missionary and I can hardly wait for tomorrow, next week, next month and next year--this is all I had hoped for it to be. I am happy and grateful to be here and be a part of this mission.

It's not easy to begin an area where we both have moved in on the same day. Fortunately, Elder Tolman has experience in being a good missionary and that's a good place to start.

I hope you are all doing well and  may you all have a Merry Christmas!

Elder Jepsen

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