Monday, October 14, 2013

Heavenly Father Can Fix This

Dear Family,

I had the weirdest thing happen to me this week-- my left eye went like 50% red. It was very attractive (said nobody ever.) More like totally weird. I woke up one night in the middle of the night and my eyes were watering. Weird. Woke up in the morning and BOOM "What is this?"

But it's fine, went to the doctor (the hospital. Same thing.) and he met with me for 36 seconds, told me "It's red. But not too red." and gave me some eyedrops. Thanks doc. Well, the eyedrops worked! But unfortunately that required Sis Packard's assistance every 4 hours.... And she didnt so much enjoy my "AHHH GET THAT AWAY FROM ME" when she'd come prodding near my eye. It was like putting on mascara for the first time all over again. It went something like this:

"Open your eye!"

"I am!"

"No you're not. Open it! And put your arms down."

Then she would proceed to practically sit on me so that I couldn't move my hands and drop it into my eye. The end. She's such a good nurse.

As for some funny things that happened:
-We had an FHE at Bro. Bah's house. For the activity, we played a game that was supposed to symbolize listening closely to the spirit. So one person stands in the middle and then when they finally touch someone (with their eyes closed) they say an animal name, and the person touched has to make the sound that animal would make and the person who's it guesses who it was that made the sound.
So Elder Tatton gets tapped on the shoulder by the sweet as honey Sis Jan. She is so tender and kind. And she says chicken. So, in all fun, in the total silence, Elder Tatton makes the LOUDEST chicken "baGAWK!!" I've ever heard. Sis Jan went SAILING away in terror!! Oh, it was so hilarious. So now whenever she passes Elder Tatton she laughs.

Also, we finally got that giant trunk out of Sis Jan's house!

Sis Suri is a tiny lady who is our primary president, and the Branch President's wife's housekeeper. She is TINY and is a firm believer that if you prayer for it, it'll happen. Her faith is unstoppable. She always suggests praying and her reason is: "Heavenly Father can fix this!!" so we were 'stumped' so to speak with the tree trunk. And after we prayed, BOOP out it came. She was like, "Ya see?!?"

So we ended up taking Sis Suri, Sis Bunlawm and Sis Jan with us out to find an investigator. The investigator was busy. So Sis Suri says "We need to pray right now to know where to go now!" So we did, all 5 of us, right on that street, cars driving passed us. We get done, and we all kind of just walk the same direction. And see this lady. We all verge on her! We sit down with her, and it turns out, she HAS a Book of Mormon, she knows how to pray, and she believes all of it! I wish you could have seen the look of victory on tiny Sis Suri's face. "Ya see?!?"

And I did see. We sometimes don't recognize the power of a prayer of faith. But tiny little Suri does. And when she prays with God's will in mind, she expects things to happen because she trusts in the power of the Almighty.

This week was harder for us. Nothing came 'easy', that's for sure, as well as a major heartcrunch when we got a text from BiiMay telling us that he could not be baptized. We were shocked. What happened? We couldn't contact him for days. Then he finally picked up the phone. His parents want him to be a monk in two years. Sigh. That is so hard. I asked him what he wanted to do. He didn't know. That was a real drop. A real sudden drop.

But in the midst of a dark night, we arised to a bright dawn. Est, our other dater, called me for our 'over the phone' teaching appointment while he was away in Khongaen. We had gotten a few minutes behind, so he had called first. "Are you going to teach me today?" he had not forgotten, and he was anxious to learn more. He has learned everything he needs to to qualify for his baptism on the 26th, but we wanted to set his vision passed that day, for when he would receive the Priesthood as a worthy male.

We opened with a prayer over the phone, taught him and so on. I asked him what he understood and how he felt about it-- he relayed every piece of information perfectly. He had to have taken notes or something! Then he said, "Sister, I feel.. I feel proud." In that moment I felt my eyes tear up. I felt impressed to tell him how proud God was of him, and how I could not describe how proud I was of him. I have watched him change his life. He walked up to the church gates willingly with his sister. He did not have to come. He accepted 2 different dates. He danced in a talent show he was not even a member for. And when his sister left for Bangkok and he went to Khongaen, he read his scriptures in a hospital bed. He was bedridden for a week, but he never forgot who he was, or what he was preparing for.

We stumbled upon a house in the back of the middle of nowheres-ville. We saw a tiny little girl in the arms of a mom. We felt impressed to stop there. The daughter was almost 1, her name was Daengmo (watermelon). The mom's name was Doom. They had an old grandma as well. They welcomed us in to say hello. We got to know each other a second, gave them the Family Proclaimation, said a few things, and asked if we could come back and see them sometime. Doom warmly agreed.
Yesterday we didn't know where to go for one open hour. Everyone had fallen through, even backup plans. I suggested, "Doom?" and Sis Packard readily agreed, saying she was just thinking about her. We went. She, the grandma, the grandpa, the daugher, and the nephew, all welcomed us. I asked her if she had read the Proclaimation. She indeed had. She said, "I want to come to your church on Sunday. It starts at 9am, right?" ..... Whoa. We sat down and shared a message of who they were, and how to speak with God. We prayed with Doom. When we were done, she said, "That was so sacred. We really ARE His children, aren't we?"

A true miracle. A woman in a wooden home on the side of the canal just found her Father.

I don't think I could have ever known what I was being prepared for when I first put on my missionary name tag. These things are not easy. But when they are led by a loving Heavenly Father? You awake to the light of a beautiful dawn, every morning, even if you are wiped. Even if you are totally out of energy. You overcome your physical boo-hoo's and feed your spirit. We're spiritual beings having a human experience. If only we could remember that, all the time. 

Conference was wonderful, we got to watch it in English! I highly suggest reviewing those words again. Especially, remember who you are. Remember your role that you play on this earth. Play it well, to the best of your ability. Play it right. And love it.


Sister Painter

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