Saturday, August 13, 2016


"I love you" to all of my dear family and friends back in America and all over the world! It is such a pleasure to be emailing all of you today. Things are just fantastic here in Laos! 

Families are ordained of God

The Work: 
The Power of the referral is amazing. In Laos, we do not proselyte. It is against the law. So how in the world do we baptize people? We get referrals. The families bring in their cousins, fathers, children, children's friends,  the neighbor down the street.... and they all come to church on Sunday to worship the same God. We are here as DIC (Deseret International Charities). We teach English. We can teach investigators if they come to the church. Investigators are always with a friend/family member. So instantly, the person who is curious about Jesus Christ has someone of their own home country to ask questions about God... to guide them through any challenges they may have, etc. It is so amazing to see the success of amazing faithful LDS Church members. Right now, Elder Morley, Elder Magill and I are the only elder's in Lao. And we have 13 progressing investigators.... um.... we can't physically teach them all because most of them can ONLY come Sunday...and we can't teach them at their home. So Sundays are just CRAZY. Tomorrow will be awesome for sure. The Lord is blessing the members here for their faithfulness. Two people should be baptized tomorrow, possibly three. They are family with one of the 1st counselors at church. Amazing stuff! Thank you for your prayers! 

A long day's work (Elder Morley)

Elders of Lao

The Bottom Line: 
Satan is working on you constantly, whether you are a missionary or not. A lot of people talk about this "higher plane" of missionary procedure/thinking... which is true, but that does not mean that you do not get tempted by Satan, sin, etc. You may be more able to receive revelation because of your assignment to a certain area, but the "call to serve" and the "setting apart as a misisonary" does not make you any more invisible to the eroding influences of sin. Missionaries are not perfect. We get tempted by Satan just as much as the rest of you.

The Culture: 

Shaboy Tiger

1. As far as teaching English goes, one thing that is hard while teaching here in Asia is that teachers in Asia have always taught where the teacher is the source of all-knowing power. So for students to talk and to contribute during a class is very foreign. Students are used to getting the information, not asking ANY questions, and then leaving class.  But we come in here with a Western-style approach of asking questions, having class discussions, etc., and it is really hard to get the students to adjust to that. It is hard to help them see that there are many ways to learn. There is not only one way. 

2. I am getting smashed with Laotian. It is hard - very fun...but hard nonetheless.


3. The word for "curious" is very rude here in Laos. 

4. Today after a service project at a local school, I tried wasp larvae. Not bad.. but not good either.

Me and my home boys eating some larvae together

Delicious...well honestly, I would give it a 4/10.

The Funnies: 
1. HILARIOUS from my English class. Many people in Thailand and Lao have a hard time pronouncing the "t" at the end of words. I was teaching one of my beginner classes the words, "Look at," and as soon as they tried to repeat it they all said with much gusto, "Look ass!" Hahahahahaha because they couldn't pronounce the "t" at the end of "at" hahaha. I just died and sat down in my desk and laughed. The students were confused and asked me what I was laughing at, and I translated to them what they just said. We all had a good laugh. Now they all say, "Look AT," for fear of offending the white English teacher hahahaha.

2. All of my students/anyone who is not a member call me, "Am," or "ອ້ຳ" in Lao - for anyone who can read Lao hahahahaha. It is adorable. They call me Teacher Am :) 

The Spiritual Thought: 
I want to let you all know today how special and sacred the family unit is to God. There were many times this week I thought of my own family and the families here in Laos. The family is ordained of God. To be ordained is to "confer holy orders on." God has literally been blessing the family unit since before the creation of the world. Please cherish your families. Husbands, cherish your wives. Without them, let's be honest... none of us would really exist now would we? ;) Treat them like queens, for they deserve it. They can literally create a human life, and they deserve to be treated like a daughter of God. Wives, I know we guys are sometimes very archaeically barbaric.... I apologize, but that is the way our brains are hardwired. You can show your husband you care through service, words of affirmation, physical love, quality time, and gifts. The same is required from males to females to establish and maintain a relationship. These 5 ways to show love are called the "love languages."* If you don't know what your spouse's love languages are - ASK. And I promise that your marriage will be much more full of love and unity. And when your house is a house of love and order and unity...God confers more holy order because we are doing our part. 

God bless you all. You GUYS ROCK.

Shoutout to my main man John Nelson who got home today. We miss you bro. The members here in Laos say hello and are in the office right now asking about you :) 

Carry on my dear friends

Love the Lord and Laugh, 
ອັບຣາຮາມ ສະມິດ-ດິກສ

Abraham Smith-Driggs 

*Mom comment: See links to "love languages" family quizzes below if interested. We have loved doing the quizzes periodically with our family to see how we can love each other better as a spouse/child/friend, etc. Here is the link to the free website:  It only takes a little bit of time.  We've done it every few years to keep up with changes in family dynamics and to make sure we each know how to love each other better.  Sometimes we take the quiz thinking of just one family member in mind. Here are links to pdf versions of the quizzes if you aren't interested in taking the online version: 

1. For couples:

2. For teens and parents:

3. For children and parents:

4. Study guide for Love Languages in Children:

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