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.