March 21, 2011
This last week was cold here in Roi Et. We had to wear long sleeves one day. I didn't sweat. I was confused. There was a light drizzle of rain - Thai people don't like the rain. But, it was a good week.
Yesterday Aa and Naang were baptized! I spoke on baptism and Mae Waruni spoke on the Holy Ghost. Naang uses the pronoun Sister. (Thai has such a complex pronoun system for women. Women often use their names or their pronoun such as older sibling, grandma, or sister as the word for "I".) Brother Aa gave a very touching testimony. They are wonderful and I know that they will help the Church to grow here in Roi Et especially since they are under the watchful care of President Sutheb and his wife, Waruni.
I realized how much I love Aa and Naang and Sutheb and Waruni. They are all saints. Truly, how I love the saints here in Thailand. It's so amazing to think that even though we were born on different continents and we lead such different lives, that we are brought together by our Father in Heaven who loves us all. The news of the Gospel is that we are all family and that as such, we have a responsibility to love one another.
So there were lots of great things that happened. We had a "sabai" exchanges with the Zone Leaders. I was with Elder Perich again. Elder Perich is a really sincere and kind man. I look up to him a lot. We taught some good lessons. We taught a fairly new investigator, Daeng, who now really wants to be baptized.
Chaeron's family is doing really great but this week only the children, On and Off came to Church. The family hadn't sold too well this last week since it was cold. When it's hot they sell really well and Sunday was a scorcher. So they went to sell because they had an "emergency ice" situation in the morning. But they are progressing well.
I really love seeing how the Gospel changes people. That's the greatest thing about the Gospel that we don't have to be stuck forever. The Gospel is about change and the power of the atonement. I know that Jesus Christ can heal us but it has to be on his time and in his way. Often times that healing doesn't take place in an instant. Patience, love, hope and charity will bring about that healing. The families we are teaching are all doing so well and I am so happy to be here in Roi Et.
My mission has been a blessing in my life. It isn’t the easiest thing to do or the most fun thing to do at this point in my life but it was the right thing to do. I know that one day I will look back and see how God filled in the holes in my heart, how I was an influence for good and how much I loved my mission. But as for now, we cherish the journey and work our hardest. And that's all God expects. I love the Lord Jesus Christ and know that He loves us so much. I love the Thai people because they are my family. And I love my family in America because they always love me.
Elder Jacob Newman