Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord

Well, this was one awesome week here! Sister Su was baptized and that was definitely a miracle. I think we definitely got a lot of help from a certain someone's special fast. Daniel, thank you so much- you truly bring us miracles every time you fast for us. I love you sooooooo much! :) On Monday I called Su's sister, Bua, and she excitedly told me that their mom signed the paper! She said the three of them prayed and then went and asked their mom to sign the paper again. Su explained what the permission slip was and why it was important to her and then her mom signed it! Amazing! She came to church yesterday dressed in a cute little white outfit. She was soooo nervous and excited. Everything went flawlessly and she was so happy. Yesterday was just amazing. Now those three adorable sisters are all baptized and members of the church. They are going to be a great support for each other. Love them all so much!

We have a new investigator named A. She happened to come to church on her own last week to see what it was like. She keeps meeting with us; however, she is still not sure that she wants to change religions. She seemed really sincere about learning, and she's been praying, but she does not have the desire to be baptized at this point. She did not show up to church yesterday, but hopefully we'll be able to meet with her soon and see if she is going to progress or not.

We had another new investigator come to church yesterday named S. I contacted into her on Thursday at Fashion Island and she wanted to come to church. She said that when I contacted into her she felt different. Normally she would reject, and no way would she normally give out her number, but she felt like she should. She came to church and really loved it all. She said she felt so good and welcomed. She also stayed for lunch and the baptism. After that we taught her. She likes our teachings and wants to study it out. She said if she gets an answer she will be baptized. Praying for her. She's really nice and sincere! Also made some friends! 

So, Facebook is going really well! I finally found a whole bunch of people from Mahasarakham, including Cream!! Soooooo excited!

On Thursday we had switch-off's with Sister Steele. She came here and I stayed. Sister Peterson went to Saphaan Suung with Sister Ferrence. It was a good day. We did lots of contacting and got a combined 29 phone numbers. Which was really good because after Thursday we were not allowed to go street contacting just for safety precautions. Anyway, around 7:30pm or so we were heading back to Saphaan Suung to switch back. However, since there's a curfew now, they want all missionaries to be inside before 8 pm. So, we ended up having to stay the night in Saphaan Suung. The next morning we headed back to Bangkapi. On Friday they asked us not to go outside unless we had appointments just so they could feel out the situation. We then got the go ahead to leave, we were just asked not to go street contacting so as to not attract any unnecessary attention (which is funny... normally that's what we're trying to do! haha). Anyway, now we can go street contacting (thank heavens!) and we only have to be in before 8pm. It is completely safe here in Bangkapi. We've seen no sign at all of unrest. We're in a safe little pocket here for sure. So don't worry about that at all.

Lately Sister Peterson and I have been making up songs on my guitar. haha A while back S. Peterson bought a notebook that had this ridiculous poem on it. It makes no sense at all, but we decided it needed music to go with it. So, we've taken up song writing in the evenings after planning. So funny.

Yesterday we went to church in Lad Phrao because Sister Peterson had never been before. There were literally like 6 or 7 of us total. So we ended up being the speakers. We basically just gave testimonies. It was a nice experience. I really felt the spirit in that little room. It just really was a testimony to me of how it does not matter how nice of church you have or how many members there are, the Spirit will manifest itself and teach us a lot! Was a really great meeting! 

Yesterday Sister Eve got her mission call to Thailand!! She enters the MTC on July 4th! Way excited, I'll still be here when she comes into country!

Here are a few verses from my scripture study from this week that I really like:

2 Timothy 1 
7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partakers of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;

12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.

This is Paul writing to Timothy. It really was motivating and reminded me of all the awesome conference talks about defending the Gospel of Jesus Christ and standing up for what we know is true! When we take a stand, God gives us power and the ability to share our beliefs boldly and with joy. I love the gospel and I love sharing it! I hope I always have this desire to let everybody know about our happy and essential message!

Okay, I love you all so much! Thank you so much for your love, support, prayers, and fasts!


Sister Stevenson

 Love these girls!

Stuck in Saphaan Suung...haha
 Sister Noy teaching how to make pepper/shrimp sauce with fried pork floss
 Buun, Su and Bua. They are so cute!
 Sister Eve opening her mission call!
Happy Day.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

"spreading goodness" and eating cheesecake

Hello everybody!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRANDMA LYNN! I hope you have a wonderful day and get a lot of great flamingo gifts! :)

Well, this was quite the week! It was pretty stressful, but a lot of good things happened, too.

So, last P-day we went to Minburi Market and I got us all a whole bunch of elephant pants. haha I hope you want elephant pants because you are getting them!!

On Tuesday we had a really fun lunch date with Sister O. She invited all of us missionaries over, as well as a few members (Sister Janti, Sister Jan, and Sister Es). It was so fun to spend time with them and to share some thoughts about being a disciple of Christ. These are amazing women and I love to hear their testimonies!

Okay, so Brother Jacky got baptized on Sunday. He is E. Black/Gettavong's investigator from Nigeria. He was so happy, and he brought his two little kids. They are 4 and 6 years old. He's married to a Thai women, so they speak Thai better than they speak English. They are ADORABLE!!! He's bringing them to English class to help them speak better. Love those little kids!

Oh, so this is sort of big news: we now use facebook as missionaries! I think it's going to be really helpful. We can get on three times a week for an hour or less each time. We are only using facebook for members and investigators in our areas, though. So we don't add anybody else. But, I think it will be really useful in contacting people that are hard to get a hold of. Way excited for this!

So this last week there's been a really fun "ancient" market going on at Fashion Island. We were there one day for lunch and I started talking to two ladies that were shopping. They were just so excited to chat and thought it was so awesome that we are here in Thailand "spreading goodness" that they insisted on buying us cheesecake. haha Turns out these two ladies are women monks (I'm not sure what they're called). So, we got taken out to eat by monks this week. That's a new experience for sure. It was interesting to talk to them. Apparently for about 3 or 4 months out of the year they will go live at the Buddhist temples. They were so cute to talk to and were also really interested in our work. They said that we are their new friends and they are going to come find us at the church. So, you never know, we'll see what happens with them! 

Sister Su has a baptismal date for this coming Sunday. She's so ready and wants to be baptized so badly. She's 15 so she has to get parental permission. I think we'll go out and visit them with the Bishop. Praying really hard this works out! She wants it so bad!!

On a high note, yesterday Sister Nadia was confirmed a member of the church. She was sooooo happy! After the meeting she ran up to me, gave me a big hug, and said, "I've found my answer!" She just loves the gospel so much and she has such an amazing testimony already! So so so happy!

At church we had a random new investigator show up. We also had a Chinese family come to church that is interested and found us online. We taught them all and I think they'll start progressing!

Also, yesterday we had a lot of fun going to a member's house to teach a couple of referrals! This lady's husband owns a Harley Davidson repair shop and it was quite a funny crowd of people we got to meet. They were all way nice and funny. We ended up teaching a friend of this member and her younger sister. They were receptive and willing to keep on meeting! Way exciting!

So, I'd say those are the main events of this week! It was a little crazy because we're trying to accomplish our mission goals, and it's cutting it really close. I'm a little nervous and stressed out, but I've definitely seen many miracles from Heavenly Father in the form of new investigators. We'll keep giving it our all and pray our hardest! 

I love it here and I love this work! I'm still on a high from getting to talk to you all last week!


Sister Liz Stevenson

Lunch at Sister O's
 Some fun displays of the floating market

Going to Minburi Market...
that lady on the left is the only one that doesn't look too excited about it.
 These mini Japanese bikes are pretty popular here
 Sisters Nadia, Nat and Jane. Love these three so much!

 Elder Gettavong is very strong. haha
 Out to cheesecake with women monks!
 The closest thing I've found to a pumpkin pie. Pretty good!
Our view eating dinner one night at Promenade

Monday, May 12, 2014

Yipee Skypee Day!

Oh my goodness! That was the best thing ever! I LOVE YOU ALL SOOOOOO MUCH!!!

So, it's been a great week!

The most exciting thing was that yesterday Sister Nadia was baptized! I love this girl so much! She finally made it back to Bangkok to be baptized and she was glowing! She was so happy. I think it was a huge blessing that I got to stay one more transfer and see her get baptized.

We've had a few new investigators this week from inviting.

 All I can say is that Family History Work does wonders in motivating people. Awesome!

Okay, honestly, there's not a whole lot more to write about. It's been a great week, especially since we SKYPED today!

Love love love you!

Sister Liz Stevenson

 Bridge and khlong path

 Nadia :)
Some of my Bangkapi family
 Rainy season has begun!
 Baptism day!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

KFC. Gangnam Style.

Helllloooooo amazing family! I love you all so much! 

I am really craving that homemade Cafe Rio dinner! Muy sabroso!! อา่รอยมาก! Today for Cinco de Mayo we were going to go to a Mexican place that has tacos and pie, but we may save that for district meeting. haha So, today we'll just speak in Spanish (now that all I can really remember is "hola"...)

Well, this has been a grand week with lots of miracles! There was one investigator of the elders baptized yesterday. Her name is Sister Pet and she is so cute! I love this lady. She loves to travel and she wants to take us to see all the major sites in Thailand. Maybe when we come back! Anyway, she gave a really nice testimony. When she met with the missionaries she all of a sudden felt like she was loved and supported and was now part of a family. She changed her life around and is so happy to be a part of this ward family and to have the gospel to guide her life now.

Okay, so this week we had some really neat teaching experiences and situations. I loved this week so much.


Do you remember these two? Well, he learned with us (Sis.Sawangwong and me) and was about to interview with the mission presidency when he all of a sudden left out of nowhere and we couldn't contact him. Last Monday I decided to just give his mom a call in case he'd happened to come back and he had! He came to English class on Tuesday and to church on Sunday. He is excited to be baptized and he has been keeping the commandments. Such a huge miracle!

Also, Nadia came back on Wednesday. We taught her back in December and she returned to the South to spend time with her Mom before she could get baptized. She ended up staying down there way longer than she expected, and we kind of lost touch with her because she stopped answering her phone. However, she's back! She said she prayed to Heavenly Father every day when she was back home that she'd be able to get back to Bangkapi to be baptized. She's been reading her scriptures and keeping the commandments! She keeps telling us how grateful she is to God that she's back! Amaaaazing! So excited!

Another awesome story! So, we have two recent converts (that Sis. Orchard/Sawangwong baptized) named Bua and Boon. They are sisters and are so cute. They love the gospel and they love to share it. Well, turns out they have a 15 year old younger sister who they've started bringing to activities and church. I think they've already shared quite a bit with her about the gospel. We've started teaching her. The last lesson we had was the plan of salvation. She loved it all and understood it so well. I asked if she believed the things that we teach and she said she really does. She accepted a date to be baptized. Her sisters were soooo excited. Her closing prayer was the sweetest. She told Heavenly Father that she really likes His Plan and that she wants to follow Him. She also asked for Him to open her parent’s hearts to let her be baptized. It was the sweetest most heartfelt little prayer. So, we're going to do all we can for Sister Su to be baptized!

Okay, so last week I contacted into a few Nigerian men who all came to church. We, and E. Black, are teaching them just because of the way things worked out, and J. has a date to be baptized for the 18th. He's married with a 6 year old son and has been working here in Thailand for the last 7 years. He's so awesome! I really love teaching him. He has lots of good questions and really likes what we teach. So many blessings this week!

Also, yesterday Sister Boat gave the sweetest testimony. She talked about how before she was a member of this church she would fight all the time with her mom and she felt so bad. She said once she was baptized and confirmed and understood the gospel better she gained patience and love that she hadn't had before and now she has a much better relationship with her mom. She got emotional about it and I could really feel the Spirit in the room. I love Sister Boat so much!

It's just amazing how the gospel changes every aspect of our lives. The longer I'm out the more I understand the gospel and our relationship with God and Jesus Christ. These are priceless truths that we have and I'm continually gaining a better appreciation for the opportunity I have right now to share it! I LOVE being a missionary!

In other news, yes, Young Ambassadors came yesterday to Changwattana. I wanted to go so bad! But, we couldn't first of all, and second of all we had a lot going on yesterday. However, Jane showed me a picture from one of their shows previous to yesterday's fireside. I saw Taylor Morris in the picture and told her to find him and tell him hello from me. She called me and was all excited to tell me that she'd found him. The members here are just so cute!

Also, turns out Friday was actually Sister Ploy's real birthday--the one we gave the "word of wisdomless" cupcakes to (as Grandma puts it haha). So, we made her a cake and took it to her. I think she was way pleased. Half the ward came to drop it off at her house, too. She felt special!

E. Hartman left a huge bag of macaroni and cheese that his mom sent him and the members wanted to know how to make it. So, at sports day we taught them how. It was not a hit... they all started putting ketchup, vinegar, and chili powder to spice it up. I gave a bowl to a little kid to eat and he left the room. He came back a few minutes later and looked a little distraught and asked where the fish sauce was. haha So, mac 'n cheese seems to be a no go here. 

On Saturday we had some fun adventures. We decided to get our favorite Thai dish at KFC to start our fast, and that was a good choice because we got quite a show there. We were sitting down waiting for our food and a worker came up to us gave us these little flags that she wanted us to wave because the workers were going to do a dance for their boss/inspector person that was coming shortly. I was kind of confused. haha Anyway, a few minutes later the boss shows up, Gangnam style type music starts playing and all the workers come out from behind the counter with pom-poms and start doing this pre-choreographed dance adding in some cheers and shouts, too. Sister Peterson waved our flags in the corner and felt kind of weird, but it was funny and so entertaining. I just don't ever see that happening in KFC at home... haha Great start to the afternoon. Later, while we were contacting we found this awesome Khlong path that was so thick with foliage and beautiful.

We are so grateful for the amazing experiences we are having here and the wonderful people we are working with!

We get to skype next Monday!!! Wahooo!

I love you all sooooooo much!


Sister Liz Stevenson