Sweden Here I Come!

Sweden Here I Come!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Welcome Aldste Van Alfen from Massachusetts!

I had a nice break between classes today and finished my homework even earlier than I anticipated so I thought I would take advantage of this time and update the blog, otherwise, it will be until Thursday most likely that I could do it!  Well, Dallin received his greenie - Elder Van Alfen from Massachusetts.  Dallin seems quite excited and equally impressed with his new companion's skills. I'm certain they will both learn a lot from each other and because of each other. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of obedience in this work. When we do all we can to be obedient the Lord honors our efforts and blesses us in seemingly miraculous ways. Blaine's favorite scripture aptly applies here: "I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise."  (D&C 82:10).  Dallin has heard this quoted his entire life. Obedience is the first law of Heaven, and is requisite to the blessings we receive.  To some, the word obedience may inspire a sense of resistance. We all have a little rebellion in us, however, if we can keep in mind that the commandments (as well as mission rules) were given to us by a very loving Heavenly Father whose entire existence is to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of His Children and commandments are issued in order to keep  us safe, happy, and free, and to enable us to not only return to Him, but to become like Him, we just might embrace the term obedience wholeheartedly and welcome the promised resultant blessings. Commandments and rules are given strictly out of love by an all-wise and all-knowing Father.  Trust the process Dallin!  You will be amazed at the outcome! 
Natalie's Letter this Week:
"This is a commandment with a promise. By participating weekly and appropriately in the ordinance of the sacrament we qualify for the promise that we will always have His Spirit to be with us." Elder Dallin H. Oaks

"We commemorate His atonement in a very special way.  We bring a broken heart and a contrite spirit to our sacrament meeting. It is the highlight of our Sabbath-day observance."  Elder Russell M. Nelson

"Our manner of dress indicates the degree to which we understand and honor the ordinance in which we will participate. We should concentrate on worship and refrain from all other activities, especially from behavior that could interfere with the worship of others... Sacrament meeting is not a time for reading books or magazines. Young people, it is not a time for whispered conversations on cell phones or for texting persons at other locations. When we partake of the sacrament, we make a sacred covenant that we will always remember the Savior. How sad it is to see persons obviously violating that covenant in the very meeting where they are making it."
Elder Dallin H. Oaks

Dear Dallin,

As you can see I have been thinking a lot about the sacrament today. What a blessing it is to each week partake of the bread and water in the renewal of all our covenants and to reflect more deeply on the blessing of the atonement in our lives. I am grateful for the opportunity to partake of the sacrament. It truly is a renewing of everything for me. I am so grateful for the added strength I receive from participating in this sacred ordinance each week.

How are you this week? How is the almighty trainer?  I pray things are going well for you and your greenie! What is his name and where is he from? Can you believe that was you over 9 months ago?  How is his Swedish?  You both may be feeling a little overwhelmed right now, but what an exciting adventure!  Love and obedience are the keys to your success. Keep up the great work.  Work hard and pray harder!  I can't wait to hear all about your first week as a trainer.

It has been a busy week here.  The Explorer broke down so it has been in the shop all week, and I have had to drive the Mustang. This has left Carter in a lurch, but he has been a good sport about it.  The Explorer should be ready tomorrow.  School is busy but very interesting.  I am especially enjoying my class on Fathers.  I am so grateful for the opportunity to be in school, but it does make my life a lot busier.  Between young women's, school, and family, I rarely have a moment to just exhale.  I'm hanging in there though. My health is holding up so that is good.  The book writing has been put on hold while Dr. White is adjusting to her new job at the Church Office building and settling into her new home, but that is okay with me because I truly don't know when I could even find time to write anything.  It is interesting though how the Lord continues to inspire me on things we need to add to the book and the direction we need to take it. 

We had Candace and one of her roommates over for dinner today. She is here at Dixie State going to school. We had a nice visit with them, and then I had a young women's board meeting after.  Somehow Sundays end up being my busiest day.  I thought it was supposed to be a day of rest.  No naps today.  Dad is staying busy with work (too busy), and he still enjoys hanging out up at the old adobe house and taking care of the yard, etc.. Carter and Ty seem to be doing well.  Carter has a date to homecoming this next weekend. He is doing well in school and is working out for basketball and baseball.  He is still growing. I'm pretty sure he is at least as tall as you, and he is finally starting to add a little bulk.  Ty is getting excited about basketball.  A new pair of hyperdunks is always a great motivator. He is spending a lot of time at the rec. center with friends playing basketball.  He taught his Deacon's Quorum lesson today. It was on Keeping the Sabbath Day Holy.  He is growing as well. He weighs 115 pounds.  Not much else going on.  Everyone seems happy and well. 

I hope you are happy and well.  I sure miss you, especially on Sundays, but I am so grateful you are serving a mission. What an awesome opportunity you have been given.  Just remember that you have the most important message in the world to share - the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.  We are so incredibly blessed to have this knowledge.  My thoughts and prayers are with you as you share this glorious message with the people of Sweden.  We are still  praying that their hearts will be softened and their minds opened to receive this most important message.  The Lord's choicest blessings can only be had through the sacred ordinances of the restored gospel.  Take care of yourself Dallin.  Always keep in mind that you are loved and missed by so many and that there are many praying for you on both sides of the veil.  Have a fun p-day!

Love you tons,

This week's letter from Aldste Milne:

Dear Fam,

He has arrived!  Elder Van Alfen from Massachusetts.  He is a smart kid, spent this last semester at byu.  I picked him up on Wednesday in Stockholm and we stayed the night at the mission home because he had some visa problems so he had a little meeting on Thursday in the migration office and we got back to Västerås on Thursday afternoon.  He has incredible swedish as well for a new guy. Very impressive.  But I have still had to do just about all the contacting and teaching of course, but he is already ahead of the game.  Doing all the work has been really exhausting for me but the hard work and his greenie mtc faith power really paid off these last couple of days.  We found some new, really positive investigators and have had a lot of really good contacts lately.  It's also been super good for me to be training too because it has helped me really lock up on the obedience so I can be a good example for the new guy.  Exactly what I had hoped for.  It has been a huge blessing to be training right now for me.

Glad to hear that everything is going well at home for you guys.  I'm especially happy that your health is holding up mom.  That's cool that ya'll had Candace and her friend over.  College.  Kind of a scary thought for me right now.  I'm glad that I still have some time to prepare for that haha.  But I'll be excited to hear about this upcoming basketball season with Carter and Ty.  Good to hear that they are putting on some pounds.  How is the pine view football team doing by the way?

I like the quotes and your comments on the sacrament.  I really have learned to appreciate the sacred time we have every week to partake of the Lord's sacrament.  We had a very nice fast sunday meeting in Västerås this last week.  I was so high on the spirit that I had even forgotten that I hadn't eaten in forever.  I always admire all the swedes too who get up and bear their testimonies of the church every month.  Their faith is so inspiring.  I wish that I could do more to help the branch out.  I have felt a lot like Alma lately when he says "O that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mine heart, that I might go forth and speak with the trump of God, with a voice to shake the earth, and cry repentance unto every people!  Yea, I would declare unto every soul, as with the voice of thunder, repentance and the plan of redemption, that they should repent and come unto our God, that there might not be more sorrow upon all the face of the earth."  But of course I am not and we can only do our best. And like Alma says also, "I ought to be content with the things which the Lord hath allotted unto me (Alma 29:1-3)."
So we keep moving forward.  Good things are happening and the Lord has helped out a lot lately.  I'm grateful for his love that he has for all of us and I'm grateful for all of your guys' thoughts and prayers for me.  I know they help.  Love ya'll lots!

Elder Dallin Blaine Milne

 Picking up Van Alfen in Stockholm

 My trainer Elder Forsyth is training again too so we took a "family photo"- haha Forsyth was proud that I was able to get him a "grandson"

Me and my boy!

 Fixing a light bulb in the church.  Don't worry it was totally safe - haha!



  1. Wow Elder Milne works good! Miss him! :) He's the man!

  2. I love reading all your letters; missed Blaine's this week. His always makes me laugh. He's soooo MILNE. Natalie, you are such a strong spiritual woman. Keep up the good work. YOU are an example to me. Dallin sounds good. I have to smile at his family photo. I know what he's talking about with the grandfather, dad and son. It's quite comical; anything to have something to strive for each day in the mission field. Dallin is a GOOD Boy. Love to all. Aunt Kim