Week 1 - first pday, yeah!

8:47 PM

DISCLAIMER THIS EMAIL IS PROBABLY CONFUSING! I ONLY GET AN HOUR! AND I JUMP FROM STORY TO STORY!!! This week has been sooo crazy; every week has its ups and downs. I was sad to say bye but I felt better once I was with my host companion! I oddly have 3 companions!  I was originally put in a trio with Sister Loftus (going to Cambodia) and Sister Rydalch (going to Washington Khmer speaking) love them!!! And then a Sister who is going to Thailand who had visa problem so I'm with her as well. So I’m in a trio during class and with Sister Mon the rest of the time. The schedule here is crazy; it is packed!!!  There is not enough time in the day to get everything done!!!! I went straight to language class the first day and our teacher speaks no English!!!!!! It’s crazy the language is incredibly hard! I'll spend like 3 minutes on one word and forget it 3 secs later grrrr. But I really enjoy it. I can’t really type the words for you but I’ll write a letter sometime... if there is time. We gave our first discussion to an "investigator" on Friday it was okay, the language barrier is rough (I only used two words of English so that was good; it just took a while to look up words we hadn't planned on saying) but we got our message across. The second lesson... was rough for me!!!! I depended too much on the pamphlets and when I discussed the material with her she didn't understand it and it’s hard because I only had a day’s worth of vocab to try and explain things. It was pretty frustrating. I was feeling pretty down so I decided to read Joseph Smith's account of the First Vision since it’s so powerful. I was able to learn a lot! I looked at the different religious sects as contradicting thoughts in my head and the passage of scripture as my feelings. I thought about how I was "alone" and how it’s time to really just turn to God. I realized that this situation applies not only to myself but to our investigator. Boon Sokah has contradicting thoughts in her head too. "Is God real  or is he not real?"  "Is the church good?" etc. and she has feelings "does this feeling mean this or this?" And is she is in a sense "alone". Even as missionaries in a sense we can’t really "help her" we don't know her thoughts and desires completely. Our job, however; is to help bring her to Christ because that is who can help her!  It was a good lesson to learn. Sunday has been the best day yet!!!! So on Saturday the Zone leaders asked me if I could say the closing prayer in sacrament. So I figured I wouldn't have to give a talk. (Don’t worry I prepared one anyways (they pick who speaks after we take the sacrament) But, I had the thought Sunday morning if someone needs to hear what I came up with God will make it happen! and it did! I was the first new missionary to give a sacrament talk! It was on the Atonement. I felt the spirit as I gave my talk that God is patient and encouraging. He wants us to come unto Christ so we can be perfected. I’ll send my talk to you later. I don't have time to type it up today. The highlight of my Sunday though was a miracle I witnessed with Sister Mon. She is amazing! She’s from Burma and didn't know English or Thai and she learned both in 9 weeks!!! She has incredible faith!  Anyways she actually flew to Thailand but was sent back because of a visa problem. In the process she lost all of her luggage.  She was so sad I prayed with her and her Thai district fasted for her and her luggage include her small luggage (which had no tracking #) made it back safely to the MTC. We both cried when we saw it in the office.  The spirit was so strong and it was a tender moment. God answers prayers! Anyways I got to run soon! Jack!! I hope you get well soon and remember this moment for the rest of your life. GOD DOES HAVE A PURPOSE FOR YOU! OTHERS NEED YOU IN THIS LIFE TOO!!!  I love you so much and I am glad you're safe! Thanks for the packages Mom they are great I’ve been sharing with my district! Tell the FAM to write me I miss them!!! I don’t have time to up load pics this week. Missionaries with IPad have no idea how nice that is........ , oh well. BTW I saw all of my friends I wanted too, and got a pic with Calvin. I got a little homesick when I realized I could hug him. I miss hugs.... anyways don’t worry about me I’m fine!!! 

 Sister Stokes and Sister Semones
 Sister Mon and Sister Semones
 Sister Semones and Elder Smith-Driggs

 Cousins serving at the same time, Elder Nicol and Sister Semones
 Sister Semones and Host
Trio companionship - Sister Rydalch, Sister Semones and Sister Loftus

Serving in Cambodia, Thailand and Washington State

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