Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Sing, sing a song.....and don't laugh

Hellooo Family! I love you all so much!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your wonderful letters!

It is so crazy that it has been three weeks since I got here! It has flown, but at the same time I feel like I've lived here my whole life. Time is super warped at the MTC. The days go by normally, but the weeks fly! Crazy!
This week was so awesome! So many great things happened I don't know where to start.
Our branch now consists of only our two districts of Thais because all the Phii Thais, Cambodians, Vietnamese, and Hmongs left on Monday and Tuesday. It was actually way sadder than I thought it would be to say good bye to them all. They had become great friends. So, for the next week it is just us Thais. Then on June 12 we will actually have 22 Thais, 8 Cambodians, 11 Hmong, 6 Vietnamese. Then the next week we will get 4 Laos. So great! I have not gotten called on yet to speak in church, but now that everyone has left I think my chances will increase a lot!
We now have three progressing investigators! And things are going well. We are teaching "Samad" who is an alcoholic and smoker, but who wants to make changes in his life. We've taught him about 4 or 5 lessons.
This week we also had our first TRC (Training Resource Center) when  we teach people from the outside world! haha We taught Thai RMs about the restoration. We taught two twenty-minute lessons and we did it pretty much without notes and got good feedback! It's kind of funny because they video record you while you teach so that your teachers can watch you... kind of creepy, but helpful for the teachers, I guess! haha
Brother Shipley asked everyone to buy Thai hymn books. We  now have to sing in our class just reading the Thai script. It is hilarious to say the least. We're doing much better now, but last week the first time we tried, we sang soooo slooooooow and completely off tune because we were concentrating so hard on the script. It sounded awful and I started laughing and could not stop for the entire song! It was even worse because I was trying to hold it in. I felt bad because Brother Shipley is pretty serious and he probably thought I was totally setting the wrong mood for his class... but he was smiling. Whew! Every once in a while that Arbon laughing gene kicks in! haha
Another funny story related to the language. This week in one of her lessons, Sister Tilley was explaining to Samad that through repentance we can be forgiven. She said something along the lines of, "when we repent, we pray and ask God. It's easy!!" But, the word for "ask" is very similar to the word for "kill." So, you can fill in the blank. Samad was confused! Made me laugh all day when I thought about it. I love language mistakes like that. They happen all the time. One of our teachers, Brother Sanchez (who served Hmong speaking) said that one time on his mission he went to a member's house for dinner. They asked him what they normally eat for dinner, and he replied, "Ramen." Unfortunately, "ramen" translates perfectly into "breastfeed" in Hmong. The family just kind of awkwardly laughed and thought it was a bad joke... he didn't realize this mistake until much later!
This week a new sister from Thailand came. She'll be serving in Washington. Her English is really good. I think her dad is a church leader and Wisan is her uncle. She told me that I speak Thai very clearly! (you don't need  to post that) Yay!
This week we also practiced placing Book of Mormon's in Thai just within our building! So fun! Can't wait until I get to do it for real!
Sunday was awesome! I love Sundays at the MTC! The talks and meetings were great. The RS speaker was on the RS general board and she served a mission in India with her husband.  So, Sis N and I went and talked to her afterward so they could chat it up about India.

Later at the temple walk we practiced bearing our testimonies in Thai to random missionaries and I ended up talking to an elder from Teton Valley (or something like that) about Yellowstone for a long time. So fun! Later we watched the Testaments. I was excited to see it, but I remembered that it was kind of cheesy. But, I love the parts where the Savior is ministering, and then when He comes to the Americas and heals the main guy's dad. It hit me so hard how very much our Savior loves and cares for us! I just love little witnesses like that!

I love you all so so so much! I'm going to try and write some more snail mail to you all today! Thank you so much for your love, support, and prayers! I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!! I'm going to start sending pictures before my time ends!
Sister Stevenson