Monday, February 3, 2014

I can't date, but I might eat ice cream in an avocado

Hello familia!

Thank you all so much for the wonderful emails and pictures! Looks like a lot of fun times skiing! Wahoo!

There's definitely been a lot of fuss over the elections with the opposing parties, but I feel completely safe. I haven't seen anything happen here in Bangkapi. Yesterday, to be safe, President Senior told us to not leave the church or apartment. So, it was a long day at the church. I was excited for the break, but it actually was pretty boring! We watched a lot of mormon messages and made phone calls and taught people who were willing to stick around. We've been really blessed to not be near all the action going on with the protesters. 

So, this was a great week! Lots of good things happened!

Last Monday we went to FHE at a former investigator's house. She's friends with a member, but not so interested in learning right now. It was a lot of fun and we all had a good time!

Okay, so this is a first: a few days ago I got asked on a date! haha We went to go work out at the fitness place and there was this guy from Cameroon working out too. As I walked by him to go hop on the eliptical I said hello, which then he in turn started quite the conversation. He asked about what I was doing in Thailand. He then asked if I was free that night to go out to dinner. I thanked him, but explained to him that I am a missionary and I am not able to date because I am devoting all my time to serving God. I think that just confused him because then he asked if maybe I'd have time to just go for a walk. haha I refused, explained that I do not date at this time, wished him a nice day and then left. Made me laugh so hard. Now whenever we see someone from Africa, Sister Sawangwong will point and say, "Hey, there's your bf!"

Hey, have you ever tried this: a member here said she loves to buy avocados, split them in half and then put a scoop of ice cream in each half and eat it like that. Never thought of doing that before. If you're ever feeling creative maybe you could give it a try!

So, one thing here in Thailand that pretty much does not exist is home teaching and visiting teaching. It's always a struggle and pretty much never gets done. The Bishop wants to work on this problem so he asked us missionaries to put on a skit about home teaching. So, the other day we worked on making this skit that we'll perform next Sunday. It was completely ridiculous and I have not laughed that hard in a long time.

On Friday we had a switch-off with Sister Steele! Sister Steele came here to Bangkapi with me, and Sister Sawangwong went to Sapaan Suung with her trainee. It was a really fun day and I learned a lot from the switch-off. She'd just come from leadership training with P. Senior and she shared a few things they learned. Zone Leaders will come teach everything soon. But, we had a good time contacting and got a lot of potential investigators. Teaching went really well, too!  We taught Brother S. the Plan of Salvation with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It flowed really well. When we got to earth life in the Plan of Salvation we were able to easily explain the gospel of Jesus Christ and help him understand that that is what we need to do while we're on earth to live with Heavenly Father again. We asked Brother S. to share what he already knew about Adam and Eve. He explained pretty well, but then finished by saying in English, "Eve soooo stupid! So stupid!" haha Well, we tried to clear things up a bit and defend Eve!  Anyway, S. is doing so well. He has a baptismal date for the 16th! I feel like I finally found my Thai grandpa!

Sister Ch. is doing pretty well, too! She's 18 years old. She's a referral from Sister Janti. She takes things a little slower than normal, but she loves coming to church, she loves the members, and she wants to be baptized. She just wants to get her parents' approval. She's going to pray and then ask them. Follow up with her today.

Sister P. is doing so well also! We got to teach her a few times this week and she came to church on Sunday! When we taught her on Sunday we taught P.O.S., Gospel of Jesus Christ, as well as the Word of Wisdom and Law of Chastity. It went so well! I think she really felt the spirit because she has a bit of a problem with  tea and coffee, but when I committed her to keeping both of those commandments she said, "Well, I've got to!" In her closing prayer she told Heavenly Father that she was so happy and glad that she learned about these laws and wants to follow them. Gave me a huge boost!

Here's a cool story that I don't think I've shared yet. A few Saturdays ago Elder Jensen and Heras contacted into a lady named Fon. She's a 25 year old law student. The next day she came to church. In that week she learned all the lessons. The next Sunday she was baptized. Literally within 8 days she was baptized and she is probably one of the most solid recent converts I have ever met. She comes to every church activity, she helps us go street contacting, she helps us teach, she's already read to somewhere in Alma in the Book of Mormon, and she has such a strong testimony! It's so amazing! I love this girl! Just goes to show that God really has prepared people out there to receive the Gospel!

Oh, this was funny. We got a referral from the Office Elders. So we got a member to go ride out to this lady's house with us to help us find her. We got completely lost and when we finally found the place I figured out why we couldn't find her- she literally lives at the land fill! There's a little group of about 15 or so people that live in huts on the back side of a land fill. That was probably the craziest place I've ever gone teaching. Turns out the referral wasn't there, but we got to talk with her grandma for a while. Sounds like they have quite the time out there at the landfill. They have a big party every Sunday and all their friends come gather together and they eat, play games, play music, etc... So, we'll hopefully see this referral this week.

The other day we were contacting on a big bridge with tons of people. I did a little math and figured that we had literally talked to about 2000 people in those two hours. Pretty crazy! EVERYONE needs to hear our message. 

Also a few nights ago I had a dream that I wanted to go see Harry Potter at the movie theater. However, in order to get a ticket I had to give an impromptu 5 minute talk on Nephi and then the ticket guy would decide if it was good enough for me to receive a ticket. haha 

Have a wonderful amazing week! Be safe with all the traveling!