Tuesday, September 24, 2013

September 24, 2013         Tuk Tuk and Amazing Grace

Dear Family,

I don't know if you know this, but I love being here in Roi Et. Why? Because this place is a place of miracles. The people here are the most miraculous part. Buk was BAPTIZED! My sweet little investigator got baptized!!

I just can't tell you how rewarding it feels to know that I met her for the first time when I got here, and she progressed so much even from that first contact that now she is a full-fledged happy member of the church. Her testimony at her baptism was the most heart-warming part. She motioned towards me behind her (I was also on the stand as a speaker/chorister, looking back for a moment with a smile and said ), and she said: "I first met Sister Painter on August 18th." She remember the very day. Then she went on to say that the very next day was her birthday. And nobody had ever made such a big deal of it as we did, taking her to that first Family Home Evening party for her. She said that it opened her eyes that the people in this church were exactly as sincere as they came out to be, and that no matter who she saw amongst the members, any person would welcome and love her the way we had in our first meeting her.

I know that the timing of meeting her was exactly perfect. I know I was meant to come find Buk here in Thailand. She is a little ray of light.

So anyway. Let's talk about the most exciting portion of the week-- riding in a Tuktuk with 6 people on the way to dinner, singing the version of "amazing grace" that we've been practicing for Buk's baptism. We have a fantastic video of that now. So then on the way back we had us AND all our junk. It was way too epic. Basically Elder Yuen ended up hanging out the outside.... that is, until it WHEELIED. We wheelied a Tuktuk. So Elder Yuen bounded out of it for a second to steady the cart, but we definitely were all the way up in the air, driver included. Elder Yuen hops back on and says to the driver, "Are you okay?!" and he's just cracking up up there like, "I'm way good! All's good!" and so we pulled Elder Yuen inside and he had to hold himself up inside on top of our luggage. We could not stop laughing.

Anyway. This week was awesome. I had a practical homecoming upon coming into Udon. That was nuts-- I was hugging hugging hugging then getting tackled, here and there. We went for Zone Conference, was as awesome as usual. President Senior is an inspired man.

I just want Thailand to have a temple. It's a miracle what progress we're making with less-active members. Sister Bing came back to church this week!

So here's a miracle for you. I wake up, it's pouring. Well shoot. This will test the faith of every single person who would be coming to church today because they all ride motorcycles. So we really wanted a couple of investigators to be able to come. I looked outside and I also knew that Sister Bing, someone who hadn't been back to church in a long time, told me that she would not come unless it wasn't raining. I thought to myself, "There is no way that it is going to stop raining. How can we do this?"

I thought about it, and thought to myself: "Well, I have doubts. But I'm going to choose to have more faith than doubts." As the Bible might say, 'Help me mine unbelief.' So I prayed. I prayed way hard. This is God-- God can stop the rain.

Then I looked out the window. Still raining. I leave my room, walk downstairs, and prepare to go try and pick up our investigators. They can't say no if we come TO THEM with UMBRELLAS right? So I take a step outside, maybe 2 minutes later.

The rain had stopped.

I couldn't believe it. We went to go get those investigators from down the street-- Yuuy DID come for her very first time. She came AFTER we went to pick her up.

But the most miraculous of all: I called Sister Bing. I told her what happened. And after that, I see her motorcycle pull into the parking lot.

If you ever feel yourself doubting, I challenge you to focus on the faith that you DO HAVE. Even if you can only desire to believe, you'll watch miracles happen. God can always stop the rain.
Sister Painter

Sunday, September 22, 2013

My Daily Life - What is Happening?! (Sep 15)

Sep 15, 2013

To my favorite people:
Hello everyone! I seriously just want to tell everyone right now that THAILAND is the best. Not just because this is the best mission, but because everything here is so funny. I am seriously laughing all the time. I think I just really like all the culturally unique randomness that occurs, how shy and polite people are, and how outgoing they become when they see a foreigner in a language that they want so badly to try to use correctly. Or they're totally afraid of you until you say something and they go "WHOA. You understand me??" It's hilarious. And then there are dogs everywhere, as per usual. And I name all of them and know where they usually are. Our neighbor's dog looks like a mexican boxer-person or something, so I named him Mochicho. The name fits his mondo thighs.
Anyway, let's talk about this week. This week was ROCKIN'. It started off not so amazing, and there were sick parts in the middle-- in fact, let me tell you a story.
Once upon a time we were talking as a district about getting sick. Sister Packard courageously said loudly: "I've been here 5 weeks and haven't gotten anything!!" and everyone looked at her and said, "Oooooo you're in for it. You asked for it." Then 4 hours later we were home before bed praying. She prayed for a humbling experience. 25 minutes later I find out she's sick to her stomach. She ending up spending the night throwing up. (Too much information? Probably. But man was it sadly ironic.) So she tells me she prayed for a humbling experience to which I said:
"Sister! Have you NOT seen Elder Eyring's 'Mountains to Climb'??" Needless to say, no more bragging about health will be done under our roof. But it took her out for a day. And that day I had some sort of cold thing that was not that fun either. So the elders had to keep bringing us 7-Eleven food and thermometers. Haha. She's all better though. I still have the sniffles. But all is well. :)
In english class, literally all of our students spread the word on their own and they all brought MORE friends. Apparently our class is the place to be. I guess we're doing something right. Yay for being fun and educational! And thats how people walk into the door of the gospel!!! It's proof, because the last 2 baptisms I've had have come from there, as well as the next 2 I'm having.
Oh yeah. This week MARY GOT BAPTIZED!
Oh yeah. Buk is getting baptized ON SATURDAY!!!!!
Oh, and her best friend? HE HAS A DATE FOR OCTOBER 26TH!!
We had 5 investigators at church yesterday. That's insane. I've never had so many. And we had 3 more rescues in the branch. People are literally flocking back to church. Yesterday we had 93 people in sacrament meeting!!!!!
We went out with the relief society president the other day and she took us ALL OVER to find members. So now we are in major business of helping people come back-- I have no idea how, with my minimal language and 'just a kid' abilities, things are happening so amazingly. It's been made clear to me that I have nothing really to do with it. I'm just the tool in the Master's hand. And let me tell you, God is realllyyyyyy crafty and smart.
Like the other day we walked out of our house after I had sat on our stairs trying to figure out where Heavenly Father needed us to go to find someone who was ready for us. We walk out of our neighborhood and I knew we should go this way. It felt right. .... But nothing is that way. ...... Except someone that we've never seen in our entire lives literally 50 feet from our street. He just to happened to be walking back to his motorbike after class, and his bike was down the street at the school. He had plenty of time to talk to us. He had been perfectly prepared by all this friends about our church, he'd passed it tons of times but never went in. His name is Bang and he's a funny 16 year old. We'll be meeting with him next week.
It literally took 3 minutes to find him. But if it was up to me, I would have never gone that way. But God knew he'd be coming home that time down that street. And thus, Bang was found.
As for a hilarious occurrence. You know Bro Jetsada? The man who just got the priesthood and then we got his whole family to come back to church? They're doing just fine. But he calls me every day for the most random reasons. 1. Because he forgets everything we tell him 2. He has the most random questions on earth. Yesterday he called and asked me how much it would cost to make some sort of chicken dish I'd never heard of. I told him I had no idea but to check with the relief society president. :p The day before that also asked about who was getting baptized. I told him for the 4th time. He responded the same, "Wow. Mary is such a foreigner name. She is a Thai or not?" I said yes she was. He then confessed that he forgot my name again. And Sister Packard's name. He laughed and said he'd have to write it down because he never remembers. But then he then came out with the best response I've ever heard in my whole life, I am still laughing about it 3 days later.
"You know, Sister, if I had a foreigner-type name, you know what it would be?"
"I have no idea."
......I died. I literally died laughing I was crying so hard. His little Thai voice killed me. He then said the next best thing I have ever heard: "He's a cowboy! ... He wears those pants and rides the dogs." (Ohhhhh man. Apparently he watched some sort of Cowboy movie long long ago. Does anyone know who Fernando Sancho is??? Please someone tell me if you do.)
So he then says: "Sister, I think that would be my name because he's kinda fat, and I'm kinda fat."
So there you have it. If I had a falang name, it'd be Monica. ... Or Fernando Sancho. It's growing on me.
I just love my mission. It's so great. Our investigators are great. The branch is great. The work is BLAZING forward.... I'm gonna need some cowboy pants for this.

Sister Painter

Rescuing One by One (Sep 8)

September 8, 2013

Dear Family!
This week we had FOUR people come back to church!!! People that had since disappeared, are now coming back to full activity. That's insane.
Let me tell you a story. A small frog had made its way into our home because it rained, and trailed itself in and out of dusty areas. I saw it later that day, and I didn't recognize it at first. It was just a pile of dirt, stuck to the ground in the kitchen. (Not that our kitchen is THAT dirty.... but when a frog goes in and out of the 'no go zones'... it gets messy.)
I looked at the little guy and felt really sad for him. Once I realized it was the frog, I knelt down. He was helpless. I kind of made a face, thinking what to do about it. He certainly wouldn't like me picking him up. But he had gotten himself into a mess, and I was the only one that could do anything about it. I reached down, and peeled the dirt strand off him so he could be freed from the ground, and picked him up. He really was small. I took him to the sink, and slowly with tiny taps of water with my finger, peeled all the dusty particles off him so his limbs could eventually move. The last thing I took off was a matted bit over his eyes. The little guy walked around on my hand, now totally mobile, and seemed content.
I smiled and took him outside into the greenery and let him loose, free again.
So on Monday I gave an FHE thought about that experience and talked about repentance. God wants to forgive us even when we get ourselves in messy situations that bind us down. Every time I think of teaching investigators about being washed clean, I think of that little frog and how stuck he was, and later how free he became.
In other news, we have a great new investigator! His name is BiiMay. It means 'new year'. :) Buk, our sweet girl getting baptized in two weeks, brought him with her to a lesson. Ironically, we had JUST seen him put in our path on the road not 15 minutes earlier. I stopped and said hi because he's in our english class. Now he's learning the gospel.
Mary, the older sister of Molly (who we baptized 3 weeks ago), has been avoiding baptism. She's wanted to be baptized in like December, even though she is ready right now. So this week we had a district meeting about "helping people resolve their concerns". I don't think Elder Tatton (the district leader) or I could have ever imagined that 3 days later, Mary would tell me: "I have a question, Sister Painter. I have wanted to be baptized this whole time. But I have one concern. It's tiny. But that's what kept me from being baptized with Molly." ........ ONE CONCERN! I was like, "Is this really happening??" She finally, after a month, opened up to me and I sent her in for another interview for baptism.
She came out, and we looked at each other, and the district leader said: "Do you have a baptismal form?"
She's getting baptized on SATURDAY!!!!
I never expected God would give us so many miracles. I don't know why I ever thought He was limited in what He could do.
Other than that, everyone we work with has been growing so much and coming back into the church with flying colors. I swear, they were simply forgotten.

I love my mission!!!
Sister Painter

The Best District (Sep 1)

September 1, 2013

Dear Family!
This week I seriously am smiling because I'm about to laugh about everything that happened. I can some it up with one phrase: "I have the best district." Whenever we are with them, I have never laughed harder on my mission. Life is so happy here.
So I actually want to start with my favorite experience first because it was seriously too funny and awesome. So we live just the two of us in a tiny little house that looks like it came from the movie "UP". Its a nice little house comparatively, but at night we always get so creeped out. Weird stuff, just us, the works. Doesn't help that we live next to a big giant open field. :P But the worst is that our door actually doesn't shut proper, so it's hard to tell if the lock is even doing anything. So when we open and close it, you have to ram into it. It's ghetto.
So last night as I had turned off the lights, it just didn't feel good in the house. I tried laying in bed and just didn't feel good about the dark. We were both creeped. And then as I'm about to make myself fall asleep, I hear a big BUMP and the walls shake, shaking my bed a little.
Are. You. Serious.

So my first thought is the front door. That's stinkin scary. So I pray and I say the same quote of comfort in my head over and over. I tell Sis Packard about the sound and she's like, "Stop. I'm freaked out." So we try to decide what to do while not making any noise or turning on any lights, in case someone actually IS in the house. I decide to call the Elders. They live about 8 minutes away. So they say to hold on a second and they'll come check it out.

So they get there and call me and say they're at the front door. I ask if anything is suspicious? Nope, gates locked. So we come down totally weirded out still. The Elders are on their bikes in their shorts and stuff and Elder Yuen says: "We brought some... weapons... just in case."
So we see them and I burst out laughing. Helmets on, red lights on their bikes flashing, and the 4 of them with their "homemade" weapons. One had an umbrella flashlight, the other had a pocket knife, one had brass knuckles (HAHA are you serious?) and the last one flipped out a switch blade. I just about died laughing. Then they went through our house to check everything they could. They got rid of every last supsicious anything they could find by throwing them over the fence.
... Or trying. Elder Tatton, our district leader, takes the bag of stuff we had taken down the first week that we had hidden away, and says: "I threw discus in highschool!" and launches it towards the fence to send it over. Yeah, it hit the fence and the bag exploded with a ton of stuff flying RIGHT BACK INTO our backyard. So Elder Cahoon (brass knuckles) hopped the other fence and had to go get the stuff himself again and throw it over.
So anyway, after the Elders checked the house they said they actually felt like our room was the place that felt the safest and best. Then they both told us that they got the same thought, and I looked at them so unbelieving! They impression they had both gotten when they prayed in there together was the quote I had replayed in my head over and over!
I looked at them in disbelief. It just goes to show that God really does listen to prayers. I know the spirit was in our room keeping us safe and happy, from whatever scares we might have. It was way cool. We all had goosebumps after now it is one of my favorite experiences I can remember on my mission. AND our house feels so safe now.
God really does listen!
Other than that, we had miracles!
We actually found the houses of two people we thought we'd never find! One is now our investigator, and the other... well, she's crazy. But at least we found her house! Accomplished!
Both our younger investigators got permission to be taught! I wish their families were in this town so we could teach them too WITH their kids.
I ran out of my missionary fund. So I was living off of my trainee's stock for a bit. Then the day we both ran out, I reached into my bag... and found 100 baht that was NEVER THERE! So we were able to eat!!!!!
We had an amazing training conference, and it was hilarious because they did roleplays in these hilariously realistic outfits. They even hoisted a king onto a table in a dress. So great. I felt the spirit all day that day. It was so helpful to know what I need to do to be better-- this week is seriously already planned out and busy. IT WILL BE SO AMAZING.
But this weekend was the craziest-- the Area 70 of Asia President Gong came and talked to just my zone. Then we had district conference with the surrounding areas to get Roi Et into a STAKE!!!! A stake!!!! And our recent converts and less actives that we haven't been able to find or contact came!!!
And then there's Alice. She is 13 years old. She spoke at the conference and said that in her classes, some people don't like talking to her because she doesn't want to talk about a lot of the things THEY want to talk about. She is standing as a witness of God at age 13-- and the most amazing part? She RADIATES LIGHT. -- and she brought a friend yesterday who we are now teaching!
So there you go. Now I'm off to eat ice cream and watch 17 miracles with "the best district".
I LOVE MY LIFE! I am so happy! It's a rollercoaster and way hard, but I am finally finding that I can be happy all the time if I want to be!
Sister Painter

MIRACLES!! (Aug 25)

August 25, 2013

If that email title didn't get your attention, you have seriously high standards. Anyway! Yes! This week was incredibly filled with miracles. We would write them down every day and just be like, "How... did that even happen!!!" So I thought I would share. It all started with Sunday.
On Sunday, a girl called me named Buk (if you recall from last week), asking if I was at the church. I said yes..? Next thing I know, she walked in the door to the church. She stayed for all three hours in her little denim jeans, soaking in the gospel. By the end of the gospel class she had committed to pay tithing when she was a member! What? WHAT?
So the next day, I knew it was her birthday and I told her we would do something with her to celebrate. I call her and ask if she is free-- she is! So we take her to a special FHE at the Branch President's house! She brings her brother! They LOVE IT. That was one of my favorite things I've ever done on my mission. We just sat around a table after dinner with a guitar (President Suthep plays!!), first singing happy birthday, then church songs with his guitar still, then he shared many things with them in regards to the specialness of a birthday and what it means to be on earth. Best fellowshipping from a ton of great members. I had brought some treats, we ate them after the Elders shared a great message on prayer. They had investigators there too. So cool.
We only had one BOM on us, so we gave it to Buk, but saw them both the next day at english class, then on wednesday for a real appointment. They loved english class!! (Then at english class, Bop, a student, hesitated before leaving and wanted to learn more about prayer. We ended up teaching her this week too at a later appointment!)
So we sit down and teach them on Wednesday. That lesson could not have gone any better. We ended up giving her brother a Book of Mormon as well, but furthermore, after that 40 minute lesson, both of them walked away with an enormous smile and a baptismal date for the 21st of September.
Is this real life?
Then we're out running for exercise the next day. We decided we wanted to talk to someone every morning. But that particularly morning someone pulled US over and talked to US. We had a great gospel discussion and he had apparently learned before at some point but only once and hadn't gotten to find those missionaries again. We weren't sure if he was talking about the right church because he was only talking on the Bible. He left and we had memorized his phone number. Ran back home. Plugged the number into our phone-- HE WAS ALREADY IN IT! He almost came to our baptism on Saturday but got busy, but we will see him this week.
We also taught our dater who just got baptized, and oddly enough, her nephew runs in with a book of mormon eager to learn! What?? Then we found out he goes home fairly often so we CAN get permission to teach him! Then of course, Molly got baptized-- even without her sister who is dragging her feet!
In the course of the week, at least 3 people just WALTZED into the church....
And Buk came to the baptism! She made great friends throughout the week and she is so excited. She doesn't even need us to tell her where to go for sunday school and stuff, she just bolts in and takes her seat, eager to listen. She is an amazing amazing ready soul. She wants so bad for her brother to get back from their parents house so he can come and feel what she feels at church and learn with her. There were many topics on strengthening families and how to do it. She truly believes that prayer and scripture study can help her family. She is a golden star!!! Est, her brother, is just as amazing. I can't wait to see what happens with them, and furthermore, maybe their family!
On Sunday we made a point to call a million random numbers. Turns out, our less actives (hundreds...) were simply forgotten! Calling them was so amazing! I KNOW WE CAN GET THEM BACK!!
Roi Et is where I'm supposed to be. This is just insane. God seriously has been THROWING people into our doors, ready to meet us! Miracles, people! Miracles!!!
My companion is doing awesome. We are so close. Sometimes she has no clue what's going on, but she's always smiling and you know what? Somehow her charity is bringing all these people towards us. I just know it. She's a boss. And way cute.
Hey, my friends. I just want you to know, where-ever you are, whomever you may be engaged or married to, whatever you may be doing: school, work, whatever! I want to thank you for getting me here to Thailand. It's been made clear-- this place is ready to have a temple wayyy soon.

Sister Painter

Hello from Roi Et! (Aug 18)

August 18, 2013


So yes, I got white-washed (go into the area where both of us don't know anything about it.)

But we weren't originally going to be here! We were orginally called to serve in Srinakharin, Bangkok. I was using subways and stuff for two days before President called me and said, "Hey, actually can you pack up? I need you to go to Roi Et." There's a sick sister that needed to be in Bangkok. So at first, I was a little bumbed. I'd never served in Bangkok!

After much moving this week, we are finally here in Roi Et, Thailand. And we're LOVING the branch. I LOVE THIS PLACE! I love this city! Forget Bangkok! THE EESAN IS MY HOME! They had an amazing mother's day activity (it was literally so well put together and more people came to that than there was mom's.) We're talking microphones, speakers, slidehsow equipment, a live band made up of branch presidency members... the works!

WE HAD A MIRACLE! On Sunday, we had no idea who belonged to our area, etc etc. but I got this call and it was this little girl asking if we were at the church. I said yes. Then she said some mumbled stuff and I wasn't sure what she was asking (I don't think she knew either) so we hung up. 15 minutes later, I'm hearing this chattering behind me. A member is explaining stuff to a girl in ripped jeans. I turned around to see who it is and the member introduces me quietly to Boog. A light bulb goes off! Boog was the name of the girl that JUST called me! She FOUND the church!! And she waltzed in all by herself!

Bro Khiaw (means green), taught an amazing investigator class at church for sunday school. He AND his big mole hairs on his face did an amazing job. He has these glasses that make his eyes HUGE. He is literally hilarious. All the members are the sweetest. We've been fed twice in two days at member's homes! The members just call and invite us all over! It's crazy! I've never been fed on my mission!

Elder Yuen (zone leader) swears that when us 5 new missionaries whitewashed into this area, it got brighter. And you know what? I feel brighter. I smile ALL THE TIME.

So like I may have said to you last week-- this transfer, this area, this sweet as sweet companion-- are my mission game-changers. I love everything about my mission. I know I'm supposed to be in Roi Et. Sister Packard and I are already best friends. She is the cutest of the cute and we have way too much fun. I am smiling all the time. Alllll the time.

Our district is great, the buddhist stuff is removed from our house (...why was it in there? How long have missionaries lived in there..?) and so the spirit can freely flow! :)
We've actually been remodeling the inside of our house. It's just us two who live in it, so we're doing WHATEV'S WE WANT! And are lovin' it. In fact, we have redone literally every living space in it. It looks legit now. And there are no ceremonial Buddhist things in there anymore.... Yay. :)
So we have a woman getting baptized on Saturday! And her sister shortly after! What a great way to come into an area.... :) But seriously. We showed up to church, and those two came, but then 3 NEW investigators came on their own (one by herself and two came with a member! so sweet!)
Anyway. I love Roi Et. There is an amazing breeze here. So we sit on our porch and eat breakfast on our tile floor after running. Its so nice. And we have a view of the tallest Buddha out our back window-- it is so cool. We're in Thailand!
My new companion is my new trainee! She is the adorable and tiny Sister Packard from Dallas, Texas. So now we're Paint and Pack as far as members are concerned. She is so easy going that she doesn't get stressed when she has no idea what's going on. She just says: "Hahahah. ...what?" I love it. I love her!!!! My new baby!!

Love you all!! Write me!!
Sister Painter

Last Day in Udonthani! (Aug 11)

Aug. 12, 2013
Hello family!

This is my very last day in Udonthani! I was informed that I have to be in Bangkok for transfers TONIGHT so I can go to a "trainers" meeting tomorrow morning before transfers on Thursday. So I'll be in Bangkok for 3 days staying in Saphansung.

I found out that I will both be leaving my area (transferring), whitewashing (two new missionaries not familiar with the area) because I am getting a new greenie! I'm starting over again! I don't know where I will be, but I know I am leaving Udon.

I want to reflect on this area a bit. I really loved it because of the members-- I have some eternal friends here. It was also the hardest experience in my life thus far. But from that, I learned a lottttt. So I'm taking everything good that I've collected and taking it with me to this new area, and leaving anything bad here. :p This'll be a brand new Sister Painter. A brand new trainer, and a brand new attitude! MY NEW AREA WILL BE MY MISSION'S GAME CHANGER! I'm stoked.

Last night I rode home side by side next to Yuuy while she was on her motorbike and I rode my bike. It was like I was on an outing with a friend I'd known forever. She is literally my Thai twin in so many ways. We finish each others sentences and thoughts! When I hugged her goodbye, It hit me how much I was going to miss these members here. Especially Yuuy, Jack and Bii. They are my closest friends here. So mom and dad-- expect to be taken to Udon when you come get me!

As a fun fact, a little boy playing the computer in front of me keeps tapping my foot. I can't tell if he knows it's me, or he's just taking his computer game too seriously. Now he's singing in a tiny Thai voice. This is real life.

So Melissa asked me if I had seen anything more gross and weird than a chicken leg on a playground. To answer that: Every. Day. Of. My. Young. Life. In fact, just last night, was eating at my branch mission leader's house at a massive party. One of his millions of huge dogs got in (its fine their all nice) but it was hungry! So it went straight to the kitchen. I saw it walk passed me way fast, then it was gone. Then it was swaggering back again with a CHICKEN HEAD from the neck in its mouth. No body, just the neck and sad dead head. Hahahah. That was more funny than gross.
This week my favorite part was going on exchanges to Sagonakhon. Not the bus ride, because it was long and not fun, but actually being there in a different area. I'd never left Udon before! That's when I started thinking that maybe it was going to be time for me to go. And hey-- apparently it is. I know I need to move-- with change comes progression.

In Sagonakhon I felt like a real missionary-- happiest day of my mission. That area is so amazing! It is seriously so clean (well, comparitively... my standards are fairly low. I'll probably freak out upon walking into a Walmart in America.) I saw giant Buddhist temples that were soooo cool!

We went to their park there and it was gorgeously green and happy. We went inviting there for a couple hours (Sagonakhon has never had sisters there before, and there hasnt been Elders there for like years and years.) So I found this student named Naam Phueng. That means Water of the Bee (AKA Honey.) Cute right? She turned into Sagonakhon's new investigator. I have never made a faster relationship on an invite, nor taught more smoothly upon first meeting. It was probably the best example of a good invite that I've ever done..... and of course it wasn't even in my area for my greenie to see! So I hope with all my heart that whoever continues working there will take care of Honey!

But either way, that day I felt a lot like Christ walking around in that park talking to the Thai's. I found myself feeding fish at the lake there and talking about the meaning of life with a man. It was so natural. AND SO COOL. I'm Thailand literally walking around telling people what they need to know to have peace in life while just smiling about. How cool is that.

But let me tell you a story. This is how to get blessed on your mission: prioritizing. So we're biking along and I see an elephant walking on the side of the road! This is literally only the second time ever in my life, so I think "I WANT TO SEE THAT ELEPHANT" but I knew we had an appointment that we needed to be at in a couple minutes farther away. So I rejected the opportunity and we went to our lesson. It went well! Then I told Sis Broeder this: "If God loves us, we'll find that elephant again."

AS LUCK WOULD HAVE IT, that same elephant was waltzing down the exact road we took!!!! Needless to say, I pulled over an elephant like a traffic cop I was so excited. I asked the guy: "Where you taking this elephant?" and he was so excited that I spoke Thai that he let us pet it and take pictures with it. It's hair was like 4 inches off its skin and so your hand wouldn't touch the skin because the hair was so strong and coarse! The guy that was with him said as emphatically as possible: "His name is DODO!!"

So there you have it. You serve God, you pet elephants. Then we let Dodo go his way and watched him cross the street at a stoplight using the crosswalk, running way fast (in elephant speed terms.)

And to end things awesome: Our investigator Knot has been feeling the Holy Ghost all his life in tiny blips, KNOWS it was the Holy Ghost, and it getting baptized next month! Every lesson we have with him, its like the spirit is POURING the words we need and how we can connect it to his concerns. Yuuy (my favorite member) said to me during the lesson that it was like she was a new investigator again the spirit was so strong. "You're teaching BOTH of us!" My favorite part was when they could NOT figure out how to describe something they were both thinking. They didn't have the write Thai words to explain. Then I said something and they both go: "THAT'S EXACTLY IT!!"
Trust the spirit to tell you what to say, and you'll discern the needs. EVEN in a foreign language than your own. The spirit speaks all languages!!

I'll keep you posted where I'm going!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Sister Painter