This past couple two weeks has been AMAZING. I am in awe in being able to realize the great blessings that comes through the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. In preparation for Zone Conference tomorrow, President had us read some assigned talks. It really opened my eyes to once again... rely on the Holy Ghost and teach for understanding.
“The gospel of Jesus Christ is simply beautiful and beautifully simple.” Think about it.
We've met with many LOVELY people this past week. Do you remember Sister Ma Lae? Well, she and her two kids went to Church! Even though it was General Conference, the kids were just full of energy and joy. Along with that they all were able to sit in for a session on Sunday. Haha. They said that they will be going to church again this Sunday. We've been seeing this family pretty constantly. They would come on Tuesday for English Class, Wednesday for Book of Mormon Class, Thursday/Friday for a small gospel lesson, and Sunday for church! :) We had a lesson with them yesterday and I was able to meet Sister Ma Lae's husband! He was hiding from us in the corner of the living/kitchen room, surfing on his phone. As we walked into their house, we took the time to introduce ourselves and get comfortable. We then sat down and said that we were going to share a message. The husband sitting in the corner, didn't say anything. We decided to go ahead and attempt to start off the lesson with a prayer. Just as we were able to do, Sister Ma Lae did this thing where she looked at me then to her husband, three times. Indicating that she wanted me to invite him to learn with us again. I did. He said, it's okay. I can hear you, continuing to search through his phone. The moment that Sister Ma Lae did that signal, I was in awe. She wanted her Husband to learn too! It wasn't long after that the two kids invited him too. He still rejected the invite to sit with us, but said that he'll listen. After sharing a short message, we stood up, and said bye. Including to the head of the house who walked into another room to do some chores. What a good man. I hope the light of the gospel will soon open his eyes to the blessings that comes from this "good news". :)
Do you remember Sister Jazz? She's going to America (North Carolina) this upcoming month. Just before she does, she wants to get baptized! Yay! Oh the journey that we had working with her ever since I came into this area. One large obstacle that she faced was that she was scared that she would not be able to keep the commandments. From her perspective, it is better to be a faithful member than to be a Less-Active member (which is actually a really good mind set). With the help of our awesome helper, Sister Kwan, we were able to help gain that faith that God will make things happen as she does all that she can in her own power. We then taught majority of the commandments to her, which was actually a review since she read the Gospel Principles book from cover to cover. She had no issues. So we got her interviewed the following day, and she passed flawlessly with the great big ol' smile on her face. She'll be baptized on the 23rd this month. We hope to see her lovely mother come and witness this beautiful moment! Ah! I love families. I believe that Sister Jazz is currently in another province at the moment, but she may be joining us today at Central World for the Water Festival! Yay!
Ever since I came into this area, I've been given the chance to teach English to a lot more. (there used to be 3 kids... but as soon I moved into the beginner's room, BOOM! There's now 12 kids) And the coolest thing is that they have so much fun with english they would come to Book of Mormon class as well! The kids LOVE reading the Book of Mormon! This is the second/third week that the kids came to Book of Mormon class and they automatically come into class looking around and asking... "Where's the Book of Mormon?" Then grabbing their copy and taking a seat waiting for class to start. Book of Mormon class now consist of those 12 kids and several other adults. Haha. What's amazing is that Sister Ma Lae, a woman from Kalian, initially claimed in our first lesson with her that she couldn't read Thai. But it seems like as soon as she saw all the kids (including her two kids) with so little education give all their efforts to read, she all of a sudden wanted to read as well. She didn't read as fast as we were used to, nor pronounced all the words correctly, but every time that she successfully read a verse from the scriptures, we easily noticed that joy that she had. Along with that, another group of kids heard about "Church" and came up to me and said, "Can we go to church!?!? Cucumber (The son of Sister Ma Lae, แตงกวา/Tengwa) and Watermelon (The daughter of Sister Ma Lae, แตงโม/Tengmo) said they got to go last week. Can we go?!?" P.S. I LOVE THAI PEOPLE'S NAMES <3 We said that they could! But that I would need to talk to their parents first. So they quickly gave me their mom's phone number and said that they can't wait to go to church! Haha. Life is good.
While inviting in a neighborhood, we happened to bumped into a mom of two of our English Students. The mom was opened to learning more about Jesus Christ and said that could visit them the following day when the kids were home. We did just that. It was the whole family. The father, mother, and the two kids. Shared a small message about the Godhead and prayer, and they willingly accepted it all. Just before we were going to leave to go inviting a little more, they then gave us food and had Elder Tun play some sort of card game with one of the English student. It was the funniest thing ever because Elder Tun had no idea how to play and couldn't understand the instructions that they were giving him. It was such a blast. We might be joining them for the Water Festival today. We plan to have a little Family Home Evening with them this upcoming Monday. :)
I had a the opportunity to do a switch off with Elder Duke last week. We got the chance to get a billion phone numbers! But we fell short. Anyways, I met this one lady at the bus stop that immediately said... "I'm not free! Sorry! Bye!". But recognizing that she was waiting for her ride to pick her up, I decided to talk to her a little bit more. She eventually gave me her number and told us where she lived for our first appointment. This past week, we were able to meet up with her. Weirdest thing is that we found out that it was in the very same road/neighborhood as our two English Students that we taught. Without realizing it, we passed by her house several times. MIRACLES! She then shared that she was willing to have us visit her because while I was talking to her, she felt bad that people around us kept rejecting Elder Duke with the same response that she said, "I'm not free!" She then learned that there's nothing wrong with learning or with being friends with us. Haha, I remembered when I offered that we could serve her by like cutting/pruning her trees... She ANNOUNCED it to everyone at that bus stop. Haha! Anyways, after meeting up with her a couple times. She said, "Hey, where is your church? I want to go." Oh. The Lord is so good! We will try to make sure that she'll be able to go to church this Sunday. :) Oh! Her name is Jaree (จรี).
There's a bunch of other stories. Such as me bumping into two different groups of Jehovah's Witness missionaries, and meeting an old man who scold us off yelling inappropriate names, etc. The missionary life is amazing. My testimony of how we are literal children of God has grown immensely. I have come to realize that I should feel no guilt/shame whenever people reject or bash on us. I am just doing what pleases God. I think I have my priorities set. :)
I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior. He came into the world to perform the ultimate sacrifice, the Atonement. The gospel, is the God's plan for us to have happiness in this life and the life to come. The Atonement of Jesus Christ is the center of this plan. I know that through sincere love that God has for us, He has once again restored this Church through the
Prophet Joseph Smith. I know that the Book of Mormon is the Word of God. I stand as a firm witness that we are His Children, and He loves us more than we could ever comprehend. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
I LOVE YOU ALL!!!! 😙😙😙
Elder Santeco!!! ☀🌮
Interview day with President. Hanging out at the office.
I love this kid. He's a boss.
This is our helper! Sister Kwan.
Elder Tun is under training. Haha
Our miracle lesson! She's ready!
Our day hunting down Sister Jazz so that she could have her interview. THAILAND IS SO BEAUTIFUL!
Elder Tun likes big bike.
Elder Tun made this Watermelon Helmet thing. 😄
I took a shower afterwards.
Sorry. This is the first palm tree I have seen since I came into Thailand. It's the same kind as we have at our house! :D
People getting ready for Songkran. :D
This Chipmunk is so cool. 🐒