Sunday, July 22, 2012

Loving the work in Chiang Rai

16 July 2012 
Hello from Chiang Rai!

How are you all doing? Things here are moving along for sure! I can't believe how fast this last week went. Really it's just amazing. I feel like I've been here not too long. I love it though. No matter how rough the week may go. It's growing. I'm really learning a lot. 

Last Monday started off like a good day. We got out and went looking for new investigators. We didn't have a whole lot of success, but we met some interesting people. That's the thing, when we go out contacting we always meet interesting people. It makes it fun. We met this helicopter pilot who flies for the Thai Air Force. He was a nice guy, and listened to what we had to say, but he said he was Buddhist. That was a bummer, but it happens. 

I remember I came into the mission expecting to baptize everyone we taught. But I've learned that it is such a sifting process to find those that will receive you and those who the Lord is preparing for His Gospel. He really is preparing people. Our investigators are doing well. Taa, he has to move his baptismal date back two months because he is a minor and his parents won't get baptized so he has to go to church for 3 months. But he is determined to be baptized. And he wants it. He comes to church and all the church activities. He loves it. 

Lek is doing all right. We have been very upfront about baptism with him, but he told us that he doesn't want to change religions.  He just wants to study our church and be baptized so he can be cleansed from his sins. So we're going to work with him to help him understand that he can and needs to change. 

Then we have a new investigator. Aping. She is solid. She is Christian but goes to a church called "Noah's Ark." Yes it looks like a big boat too. She said that at Noah's Ark, all they do is sing to praise God, then they go home. She came to church yesterday and really enjoyed it! She has some friends at church too so that's good!

We think Naen is well but we're not sure. We haven't been in contact with her. She went to Chiang Mai and we haven't heard from here since. 

We also have this other investigator, Form. He was a referral and teaches Kung Fu. He came to church yesterday. He said he affiliates with all religions, because they're all good. We just need to help him see that good without ordinances does not equal salvation. 

Oh, then we also taught our recent convert Brother T. He is doing so well! He is still progressing in the gospel loving the Liahona and the messages from the first presidency talk. He read an old conference Liahona at the church and liked a talk about faith in the Lord Jesus Christ by Elder Pearson. That was a good talk. And he is already talking about going to the Hong Kong Temple. He knows that the temple is necessary for our salvation and want's it! 

One thing that I studied to help me more this week is charity. It's one of those Christlike attributes that we all need to develop. In our church we look to our Savior as our example, and He is. Our perfect example. As missionaries we invite investigators to follow the example of Jesus Christ by being baptized by someone holding the authority of God. We as members need to look unto Him as an example for us always. Doubt not, fear not. I love the New Testament for it's account of our Lord. It's the good book. I'm grateful for it. I love the testimonies of Christ given by His apostles and disciples in it. I love in Acts 2 when Peter is testifying about the Savior, and his bearing testimony allows the Spirit to pierce the hearts of the hearers, and then they ask the question "Men and bretheren what shall we do?" and Peter's answer "Be baptized." Bearing testimony is a key element for us all. 

Well, here's one interesting experience from this week. We were riding our bikes, and pulling a u-turn around this median, I looked and didn't see any cars, I looked the other way for one second, and looked back as I was turning, and to my surprise a car had come out of no where, so I turned sharply, and fell off of my bike to avoid it.  What happened next was amazing.  I seemed to fall so slowly, then it was as if the instant I hit the ground I hit a trampoline and I was back on my feet that quickly. I believe that there was divine assistance there. But it reminded me to be a safe driver. So I'll do it!

Well, I love you, and I love this work. I'm grateful for letters I get and testimonies, even if they're from my friends who write them in different languages and I can't understand. I can feel the Spirit of you testimony.

Forward in Faith!

Elder Todd

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