Sunday, January 8, 2017

1-8-2017 Sakon Nakhon Thailand

Hey hey Dad!

One full week In-Field done! It went by pretty quick, but also pretty slow if that makes any sense.
So after we sent emails last P-Day, we went to a Wat over on a mountain! I can't remember exactly what it was called, but it was great, and I took a lot of pictures there, so I'll be uploading those shortly! Some cool spiders, lots of cool carving and buildings though! The culture here is pretty amazing, and cool!

As far as the language is going, it is getting a lot better! I went from last week, not understanding the Gospel Principles class at all, to understanding a lot, a good majority of the words being used! At this point, I'm trying to "think in Thai" as one of my MTC teachers (Brother Staten) advised us to do. It is difficult, at times, but I feel as though it is really helping! It is just a strange concept to "fundamentally" know a word, and not its translation in to English, but that's how it goes! If learning a new language was easy, why would we have spent 2 months in the MTC? Reading is still somewhat slow though... but I'm working on it! It has been a lot better as of late, but I can always improve. Everyday, when I wake up, I feel like I understand more and more, even though I might not know what the people may be saying word for word, that's OK! Just have to rely on the Spirit after that. Well, always, but really rely on the Spirit after that!

We got two really cool investigators last week! We were contacting in this little neighborhood (kind of creepy because there is this one lady who smells like alcohol and chews Betelnut, which is a highly addictive nut with Nicotine that turns your mouth blood-red...) but there were a lot of cool people there! One guy said he really liked to study religions, so we gave him a quick lessons, talked about the Book of Mormon, and set up a return appointment later! His name is Brother N, and he even came to church with us yesterday! During Gospel Principles, Prathaan Jack (our Branch President) was talking about the temple, and then he was saying we can prepare, and then proceeded to list all the commandments we teach about as missionaries in their entirety... So Elder Bjarnson and I were just thinking "Well, shoot, we really hope this doesn't scare him!" It turned out great though, and we taught a lesson just after church, and clarified any questions he had, as well as teaching the Plan of Salvation. It was great!

We also have another investigator called Sister N. She can read the Book of Mormon so fast! In our lesson with her yesterday, she read 5 Chapters from the Book of Mormon in about half an hour or so! It was pretty insane, and she seems really interested! We'll see how our future lessons will go!
Our baptism didn't follow through this last Sunday! Our District Leader, when interviewing he said that she didn't quite understand Repentance all the way, so we should re-teach her that principle. Which is fine! Just teach her, and help her clarify and concerns she might have about Baptism! She has a strong testimony already, but we just need to clarify, that's all!

The members are so great here! They're really friendly, and are always willing to talk with us! I like talking to them because I don't feel particularly weird about asking them to speak slower so I can write what they're saying down... That would be a bit weirder in a lesson! Just always asking me questions has been helping me grow, and learn more quickly! I'm glad to be serving here, and to be here with Elder Bjarnson! Missionary life is difficult, but always rewarding!

Talk to you soon! Take care, love you!
- Elder Collin Decker
Thailand, Bangkok Mission

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