May 23, 2011
So this week was another great week here in Warin. This last email I sent you we didn't really have any investigators but Elder Senalai and I have been working really hard and so we have some investigators that are learning pretty regularly now. From the Italian/ Thai 24 year old and his friend who he referred to us, Robbie and his Thai wife, Brother Rag, and a referral from a recent convert’s friend in Gantharag, things are going really well in our area. I am not sure that we will see anyone baptized before I leave Ubon but I think that the area is becoming better and better.
It feels so weird to think that tomorrow is my last Zone Conference as a missionary. It seems like yesterday it was my first Zone Conference in Bangkhen where the air conditioner broke. (Yes, it was just as hot as you imagine.) My mission has gone by quickly. But I look back and think of all the wonderful things that I have seen and all the wonderful friends that I have made. My life without Thailand would be so different. Thailand is an amazing place. I will miss speaking Thai everyday. So. Much. And I will miss all of my Thai friends that I have made here. That's why I guess I will just have to find a way to come back to Thailand.
Anyway, this week was one of those really fast weeks. It was full of lots of great happenings. A quick update on our investigators.
Rag - He got off of alcohol again but he is still struggling. Please. Don't ever drink. Getting addicted to alcohol has done nothing but made his life miserable. He drinks because he lost his daughter but when we fall into alcoholism, we lose hope and lose sight of who we really are. This is a very sad situation. Anyway, he's doing better but I am not sure how long it will take him to kick the habit.
Robbie and his wife - Robbie is a very smart man. He knows a lot about the Bible. He brought up a concern about how the prophet is the earthly leader of the Church rather than apostles. We are working with him to help him understand that the Book of Mormon is a powerful tool for his life. He talked about the changes that he has seen in his life since he has been reading the Book of Mormon but he still doesn't quite connect them as an answer from God. His wife also reads and enjoys the changes she has been seeing but again still doesn't quite connect the dots. This week he didn't go to Church but we will keep working with him.
Gantharag folks - Brother Had is just full of referrals. This last week two other people showed up at Church who are friends of our recent converts/their friends. They are pretty interested. Gantharag is far away but it is well worth the time to go out there and teach about 4 - 5 different interested parties. It is really great to see how the Gospel changed Brother Sanya and how he wants to go out and share it with all of his friends. I love that about the Gospel, the power to change and the power to be something better and more than we are right now.
This week was really great. I feel pretty good. Sure I am tired everyday - that's probably from just being a missionary for so long but I love serving here in Thailand. I consider it such a pleasure to come and work with these people and help them come to know our Savior. When we know who we are, we won't have a desire to live short of our potential. Remember the most simple words: “I am a Child of God.” We must always remember who we are and where we come from. Then and only then, will we have happiness that we can't obtain from anything else. I know the Gospel has power to change people's lives in a profound way.
I love you all and pray for you daily. Do the things that are right and remember to love and forgive one another.
Elder Jacob Newman