November 11, 2014

11/10/14 - Loygratog (Lantern Festival)

Well I don't have much time to write this week because we are going to a waterfall! As of this week I only have a year left, wow, it really all goes by so fast!! This week we went to Bangkok AGAIN for leadership training! I basically live on those trains and busses! I am pretty sure I have perfected traveling in Thailand! It was really fun to see a lot of the missionaries at the training! Usually just the STL's (Sister Training Leader) and ZL's go in the meeting while their comps study in another room. But of course, they choose me to go into the meeting and translate for senior couple missionaries (who happened to be my last branch president in Sisagate!) Translating was kind of hard because President Senior at one point was talking about accounting and using money terms that were really hard to translate! But it was fun and a lot of good practice!

I am so glad I got the opportunity to be in that meeting! Later in the week the ZL's and STL's had to go around to all the districts in the zone and deliver the message so I got to hear it again and again!! They talked a lot about obedience!! If we are not obedient then it is not the Lord’s way, and if it is not the Lord’s way then the Spirit will leave and miracles will stop. It shows God that we don't really care about him or love him enough to obey him. D&C 50:17-18. Obedience is so important! I have already seen many times on my mission that when we were obedient the Lord blessed us! Sometimes the blessings are not obvious in the moment but they will come! For example, we would be so obedient the whole day and do our 2 hours plus of contacting and not get any numbers but then that night we would get a referral and random people would walk up to us wanting to know more about our church. This has happened countless times! Obedience is key!

We also talked a lot about change! Some people say, "I can't change, that is just the way I am." NO NO NO!!! Saying that rejects the whole plan of salvation. Whether we like it or not we are always going to be changing, we just have to choose which direction! In this life our goal is to become like God. That literally is the purpose of this life to overcome weakness and CHANGE to become more like God! Of course it is not going to happen over night, but if we strive and work for it, we will progress each day in becoming more like God! When I first came on my mission I did this activity where I had to answer three questions imagining my final day in the mission field! 1)What do I want to say I have done as a missionary? 2)What do I want to become? 3)What difference do I want others to see in me? Having had this as a guide has really pushed me to change. I am so grateful that we have this gospel and to know that we can change to be like our God! I see people change everyday! Two of our investigators got baptized this Sunday! When we first met them and started teaching them they said, "I drink tea everyday! My body needs it! I can't stop drinking it! That is just the way I am!!" But as they learned with us and relied on the Lord and really applied the gospel they began to have a desire to follow Christ and become like him! As they put off the natural man and used the atonement they were able to stop and CHANGE! I have seen this so many times! I know that this gospel changes lives for the better! Anyone can change through the enabling power of the atonement! It is so so amazing!!

This week a lot of fun things happened!! We had Loygratog, the lantern festival like in the Disney movie Tangled! There are lots of parades and no school. It was so beautiful!! Of course my camera died when all the good stuff happened but it felt magical, like I was in the movie Tangled!! It was so much fun!!! In Thailand they love “coco yen” which is cold hot chocolate. It is so good! We asked the lady who was serving it to give it to us without tea. But right when I tasted it I spat it out (not seeing a Thai lady sitting on the ground and completely soaked her!) Haha, good thing she was really nice! The drink did have tea in it! NO!

It was a good week! A lot of funny things happened but I don't have time to write them all! I am excited for this upcoming week when get to do some service in the rice fields. Also, our mission has a goal of getting every companionship “balanced” (that is code for numbers of lessons, work with recent converts and less actives, contacting, baptisms, etc) on the 16th! We are going to have to work really hard, I am excited!! I hope you all have a great week!!! Love you all!!

- Sister Herrmann

PS MOM, I GOT THE PACKAGE!!!!! It got here a week after you sent it and since I was in Bangkok for the training I didn’t have to wait until the next transfer meeting. I LOVED IT. I CRIED MY EYES OUT!! It literally couldn’t have been any better! Don't worry, I read the letter and only saw the unwrapped skittles and mashed potatoes and Christmas decorations. I am saving everything else for Christmas!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHH loved it so much! I really do miss purple skittles!!

Also, I just want to tell you all, real fast, again, how much I love you and am so grateful for each and every one of you!!! Thank you so much for being good examples to me and being my BFF’S!!!!

FHE badminton with my cheetah pants and ugly cat shirt :) 
FHE eating steak- its very different than American steak :(
With the branch president
Wandering around Bangkok while waiting for our train
Waiting at the biggest train station ever in Bangkok
I got a package and cried of happiness! 
LOYGRATOG SO FUN! Usually at this time of year it is cold, so there are no buys. BUT this year is special and it still is 100000000000 degrees! haha
Picture with the boys who are wearing make-up
Christmas pictures from Cole! I love them!

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