We just cruised into the internet cafe from a nice little pday breakfast danky danks. Life is good- and so was this week so i'll hit you up with the DL- p.s. happy valentines day rn;)
On the note of valentines day, we listened to a way cool little clip by elder bednar about love. He said that love isn't something that we just magically have for other people, its not something that comes by chance, but kinda like faith, its a choice. The word love has two forms- the verb and noun forms. In order for the noun form to come- we need to do the verb form. We have love for those people that we actively love. When you love people through your actions- thats when you truly increase your love for them. Pretty trippy concept but i liked it and i exhort you to actively show more love for those people that God has blessed you to be around you. Actively love them and you will see that your love for them will deepen, and in turn there love for you will grow. I love loving :)
Another point of this week i really enjoyed was our meetings with our stake president and then later, with our elder's quorum president. First of all they are just both studs and i feel so lucky i have the privilege to serve with such great men of God. But the work progresses in such a more brilliant way when we are working hand in hand with the leadership- we go out visiting those in our quorum who are in need of visits with our EQP and others in the quorum every friday and sunday. It's a blast- and you just have this sense of brotherhood and comradery with those we go out with. To get some fire in the member missionary work- just take them out to do missionary work! its pretty simple. The bonfire of enthusiasm for the Lord's work is already burning you just gotta get some members close enough to the action to catch some embers ;) Right now we have a theme around thailand "Make St8ke" and we are working towards the vision of turning the 3 stakes in thailand into 8 stakes by the end of this year. before our theme was "BRAFT" which stood for "baptism, retain, activate, find, teach" and so elder bunker and i felt the need to make an acronym for st8ke'ing: "Serve, Train, d8rs, Kindle (the fires of faith and missionary work) and Exhort (which covers BRAFTing boiii) - anyways its clear to see some big things are happening this year.
Also, went on a switch off with a brother to go give their family friend who is buddhist a blessing in the hospital. we got there and his family was way cute, and they said they were all buddhist but could they still get a blessing from jesus christ? so I explained a little bit about the ministry of christ and the miracles he performed and explained the principle of faith. i looked around and everyone in this hopsital room (a giant room filled with 50 some odd patients and there loved ones around) were sitting and intently looking at the white boy with a white shirt and tie and a jesus name badge teaching about christ. so even though i felt i little awkward with hundreds of eyes on me, me and this member layed our hands on his friends head and gave him a blessing as he was sleeping/sick. The member for some reason of another insisted that i gave so i did. i finished giving the blessing and as we took our hands off his head, we looked at him and in his peaceful rest he slowly opened his eyes, smiled, and gave the little thai "Wai" and thanked us. it was a very cool experience.
In other news- We flew down from roi-et to Bangkok on tuesday night. Both the flight and MLC were a great experience haha. We were chowing down on some mama (top ramen) noodles that we had just bought before our flight, and everyone was boarding all of the sudden, and then next thing we know we are the only ones left in the terminal and we see the backstair set up to the plane being rolled away, and so we take off (with my gopro getting all this footie) for the plane and make it- the last two on. The roi-et airport is way cute. there is literally like 1 or 2 planes at the airport at a time, and 1 runway. 1 terminal, 1 baggage rotator thing, etc. Met some great people on our trip over there including a police man who jumps out of planes for a hobby and invited us to go with him. Is skydiving in the white handbook? maybe after the mish. So we get to MLC and boy do i love president johnson and our beloved APs Elder Wright and Paxton. So much greatness in that council as we learned from one another and received inspiration together for the mission. the over-reaching theme was "Love for God" and the question was posed, "why do we do what we do?" i could write a lot of stuff we talked about but ill just give you some favorite little one liners- "live to please God" "desire deeply to bless others" "invite with real intent" "love for God drives diligence and obedience". So a take-away thing i would invite you to think about is- what are the motives for the things you do? i would hope it's out of pure love for God and thus love for your fellowman. and if there are some other motives taking first place its okay, repentance is a beautiful and simple principle, and all repentance doesnt require you to move backwards before moving upwards again. sometimes just accepting your weakness and turning your will over to God is enough, and you can instantly begin moving forwards and upwards.
Our flight home was the next morning at what we thought was 5:30. So we woke up at 3am to get dressed and quickly get a taxi over to the airport and be there by 4:30am. We get there and get thru security and all to find out we read the ticket wrong and it flew out at 7:30. so we tried to get a nice nap on the terminal benches that morning haha but yeah. However God's power of supporting us when we are tired is very real as we experience quite often over here. who would have thought that day we would be able to shower and get dressed and go out and work like a normal day- it just doesn't hit you until you hit the pillow.
Our investigator Dutch Mill got baptized this last sunday- a way good day, and i learned some way good lessons from teaching her. One thing i want to share is how important it is to keep the commandments- no matter how inconvenient it may seem. The sunday she was getting baptized, her mom came as well for the first time. Right after sacrament meeting her mom asked me if i had eaten yet, and said that she and dutch mill were starving and were gonna run over to the store next to the church to eat. i looked over at dutch mill and then over at another RC who is friends with dutch mill, who both of them knew they shouldnt go buy food on sunday. it was pretty awkward as i didnt just want to be like "no dutch mill you cant go eat food with your mom no matter how hungry you are", but at the same time she cant just be going and breaking the sabbath on her baptismal day! her mom tried to rationalize and say she would pay for us and we didnt have to spend money haha and for dutch mill im sure it was so tempting and seemingly okay. but finally dutch mill was just like- "mom, i have to keep God's commandments" and she stayed at the church while her mom rushed off to eat. her mom came back for the baptism which was good but my favorite part of the experience was the lesson im sure that dutch mill's mom saw. and that is that commandments arent something thats ncie to follow sometimes, but when its inconvenient we can shmeag our way around them. i was way proud of dutch mill, and it was a beautiful day of baptism.
Last little highlights of the week include playing a game we made up called "musical chairs or fall in love" for a valentines day activity. those who didnt have a seat had to run across the room without getting hit by toilet paper that we were throwing at them, and if they got hit they had to come line dance with elder bunker and elder smith haahaha, probably one of the funniest things ive seen in thailand. line dancing to thai "Isan" music. There is also a huge event in roi-et called "Bike for Love" which we found ourselves biking in when we went to this big park to invite haha. We all of the sudden were just biking side by side with tons of people and important officials wearing their pink "bike for love" shirts. It was some fun inviting hahah. Also- Elder bunker and I have been repping our new smart glasses we got last week. I've found people view me as much more intelligent with them on, and handsome too ;)
Okay last lesson of the week: So I'm not no visionary man- but i had a dream this week that taught me a deep lesson. So ill summarize it for ya.
I was at a huge venue, almost like an amphitheater type place and there was a wedding that day for one of my older brothers or someone. And we were setting up tables for it and getting little details set up in the morning for it and it was gonna be a huge party- like crazy. So people start rolling in- friends from school that i recognized, family, mission homies, just EVERYONE. So everything is about to start and their is a huge live band and lights and everything and right as it is about to start, i realized i didnt have my suit on. So i ran up a little from the venue to a clubhouse type place looking for my suit that we had rented earlier that day. i get up to the second floor of the club house and all i see is empty boxes of suits that were already being worn by wedding crew. so i am rushing around frantically, and go talk to mama C, and run all over the place trying to find my suit, and all the while the party is going on. I peak out the window of the clbuhouse and it just looks so fun and it stressed me out wanting to find my suit and get it on even faster so i could go celebrate with everyone. eventually one of my boys, elder rogers, comes up and helps me find the suit in some random closet. i get it on and rush out excited to go talk to old friends and family and have a good time, and as i walk out, the clean up crew was already taking down the decorations and lights and tables and chairs, and people were walking out of the venue, and it was all too late. I had the worst feeling of being left out and it just sucked haha. so i woke up and made the resolution that i would never let somthing like this happen to me- that i would plan out well everything i do so i can enjoy life as it comes, and not stress over getting details prepared. But if i am ready for what is to come i can just flow and enjoy it. so be prepared my friends.
Okay well- thats what i got for you guys. I love you- and will leave you with a scripture from studies this morning.
"Now ye see that this is the true faith of God; yea, ye see that God will support, and keep, and preserve us, so long as we are faithful unto him, and unto our faith, and our religion; and never will the Lord suffer that we shall be destroyed except we should fall into transgression and deny our faith." - Alma 44:4
Don't deny the faith, but place your trust in the everlasting one that gives us daily breath! I love you with all my heart and pray you have a fantastic week you champions<3