July 1, 2013

Re: Come to the Sunday School and you'll have a lot of fun

Well, well.

This last week has been good.  I'm losing hope in one pair of shoes.  After one rainstorm they took days to dry.  They have a new feature that they didn't last year.  There are the pressure activated intake valves (cracks), the one way drains (holes, the one allowed direction is into the shoe), and the reservoir system (what used to be the inside of the shoe, now torn and cracked).  These new features allow one shallow puddle to leave me sloshing around Bangkok as long as I want to.  Quite amazing.  I'm pleased to say that my other two pair hold up much better.

We are really excited about สุพัฒน์, one of our investigators.  He and two friends all came to church for the first time!  We've not had any new faces at church for some time now, and it is really exciting.  He really feels great when he learns from us, and wants us to come over.  He prays all the time, and actually reads the things we give him.  The only reason he's not a dater is that he wants to know the commandments before he promises to live them by being baptized.  I believe he will be baptized this month.  

Additionally, one friend (one of the first people I ever talked to here) wants to be baptized, and has expressed so many times (has a few obstacles with commandments that he's working on.). They talked to another investigator who can't keep the Sabbath day with his current job.  We have thought that they could help him (they own a restaurant.), but we felt it would be better to not get involved.  They are going to try out his food, and if it's good (which it is, he's very skilled), they will hire him (he can make at least as much money as before) and give him all Sundays off.  Needless to say, we were all pretty excited about that as well. We pray that everyone will continue in their current path.  It's playing out rather miraculously right now.

We had zone conference.  It was really inspiring, and rather motivational.  The focus was on desire, duty, and diligence.  The whole time was pretty engaging, with plenty of variety (such as videos, activities, breakout sessions, powerpoint presentations), everything ran well, and then we brought it to a close.  We usually have zone conference every other transfer, and have some closing testimonies from "the จบ-ers"  (joppers)  alas, that now involves me.  To จบ is to finish, complete, graduate, and is a mission word used for everyone who is going home.  It was strange to get up and bear my testimony and have a few minutes to talk about what I have come to know.  

In that testimony I said  "... so many things start in one place and they are coming back to a place they were before.  But it's not walking in circles, it's walking up the staircase of heaven.  I've found that as I have served the Lord, I've come to know everything I knew before, in a way I never knew it before.  And everything that I ever thought I  knew, I didn't know fully enough.  And everything I felt it was of God, I didn't feel it fully enough, I've come to grow much, much, closer to my Savior, I know that he lives, he is our redeemer, our savior . . . as we follow him we will become more like him.  That has been the greatest miracle of my mission - watching others in their progression towards the Savior, and watching myself, [in] my progression towards the Savior."

Although I have plenty of time left, I wanted to share a portion of a closing testimony with everyone.  I'm grateful for technology which enables me to replay it and transmit a portion of it here.  I really feel like it is a great expression of how I feel towards God.  I love him.  He is ever mindful of each of us, and has been working for our benefit from before the foundation of the world.  I'm so thankful for the chance to share that message every day with those who have never known him in this life.

I love you all.

Elder Robert Buss


My email shows that this was not sent.  I'm sending it again just in case.  If it wasn't, I'm terribly sorry, I have no idea how it didn't get sent.

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