Monday, July 25, 2016

Still Waiting for a Visa

Hello FAMILY and FRIENDS. Still here in Asoke (Bangkok) waiting for my visa to get here. This week has been awesome and full of amazing miracles. Elder Cherd, Elder Hunt and I are rockin' it! It is so much fun to see the little miracles every day. Today I am going to share :) 

Cool Flying Squirrel!

The Work: 
Here in downtown Bangkok, everyone has a go go go attitude. Much like New York City or Tokyo, everyone needs to get somewhere fast, and they don't have a lot of time for other people. As missionaries, our job is to bring others unto Christ, which includes inviting people on the streets of the city of Bangkok. Whether we are taking the MRT (subway) or the sky train or a taxi to appointments, we shout like crazy men as we walk around saying, "Who wants Jesus?!" Lots of fun with these elders. Sometimes I feel like we are going to drop a million dollar business deal or something because we walk and look like some posse dressed up in suits all day. 

Million dollar deal

Except in this scenario, we are dropping something way more important than a million dollar deal. We are participating in the salvation of human souls. More stressful than a million dollar deal? I will let you answer that question. 

We had a great baptism yeseterday. One of our investigators got baptized. Her name is Sister Gate. She is AWESOME. She was referred by her Grandma and is a total boss! In the picture, we are all putting our thumbs to the side because in sign language (apparently) that means baptism hahahahahahaha.

Congratulations Sister Gate!

The Real Deets (details): 
I want to put this little entry in here from now on when I write my entries because I think all of you reading this want an actual account of what a mission is like. Whether you are a returned missionary or a Laurel or a Priest - the Real Deets can help set expectations for when we serve as full time missionaries. So who cares? Why do I get up every morning? I am a 20 year old punk kid talking about Jesus all day? I must be crazy. But why do I do it? The Real Deet for the week is that the physical amount of energy you put out in a day is a lot. Your spirit and your body both need battery charging every day (that is why every day we work out in the morning and study - so that both aspects of the human being can be fully charged). When you get home at night, or it could be at 6 pm, or at 12 pm in the afternoon, your body uses so much energy that you can't keep awake. A mission is mentally and physically demanding - it beats you to your knees. But that is ok and necessary - because your knees are where you should be anyway all day long pleading for forgiveness.

The Culture: 
1. Busy life in Bangkok - allows for tiny apartments.

2. Again...people cannot believe we can speak Thai. Their minds just go blank when we talk to them because they are so taken aback by the fact that we can speak this language. It is a hard language to be sure. On that note - can't wait to feel like like a greenie again in Lao where I can understand hardly anything hahahaha. Wish me luck.

Our boys at the train track

Yummy Yummy in my Tummy

The Funnies: 
1. Elder Hunt eats A TON. The guy is like a horse. If we ever see something on the street (food vendor), he asks, "Excuse me, is this free?" Sometimes it is, most of the time it isn't, but sometimes the people just let him eat stuff from their store hahahahaha. It is awesome! 

2. We got into a van the other day to go somewhere, and this Chinese girl runs up to us and looks at Elder Hunt and says, "I know you!"... Elder Hunt was like... "Really? I have never seen you before." One thing leads to another, and she had come to our English class. She apparently mixed up the word 'party' for 'meeting,' so hahahah she asked if she could come to the 'party' on Sunday that started at 9 a.m.! We at first were like, "Yeah come and 'party' with us!" Hahahahahahah and SHE TOTALLY CAME and is now an investigator. She also brought a friend. So little announcement:  We are having a CRAZY PARTY AT THE CHURCH at 9 AM! SO TOTALLY COME AND BRING YOUR FRIENDS. WE WILL HAVE MUSIC AND EVERYTHING.... EVEN FOOD AT THE END. So social media this bad boy out there! Location: Asoke Chapel.

Brother Superman

Spriritual thought: 
A man in the international ward said something very profound yesterday. He said (along the lines of), "We come to church to take the sacrament. Everything else on the Sabbath day including the service and the speakers and the classes resides with you. YOU decide when you come to church to learn the gospel. You decide to go to the classes... all of these things reside with you to make the decision to learn personally. The only thing that matters on the Sabbath day is the sacrament. Everything else is of our own volition. Much like our daily scripture study and prayer - the actual LEARNING of the gospel is up to you. The covenants are the same, and the application is the same every week... but the mental energy it takes to LEARN the gospel is up to YOU." I thought that was profound advice. Let us take action in our Sabbath day worship and choose to learn. It is up to us to take the steps necessary for spiritual wellness. So just DECIDE and make the choice to learn.... rather than come to church... come and LEARN. 

LOVE YOU ALL. Hopefully next week when I send an email, it will be from the country of Lao! I can feel your prayers and am so grateful for them. Love you! 

Love the Lord and Laugh, 
เอ็ลเดอร์ สมีธ-ดริกส์

Elder Smith-Driggs  

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