April 28, 2015

4/27/15 - "MAYracle"

This week was like a roller coaster, lots of ups and downs! At the beginning of the week it was apparently the hottest it has been in more than 55 years! And to make the situation even better our AC was broken. I literally thought I was going to die! We would come home at night and before planning we would stand (in our dresses) in an ice cold shower and get completely drenched to cool us down! I have never experienced heat like that in my entire life! I think that God realized we were dying so he sent us rain for the whole weekend!

A cool thing that happened this week was that our new investigator is a movie star! We sat down with him and the members with us were all shocked because they have seen him in movies! He has such a great desire to learn and wants to change his life! I am excited to continue to work with him!

On Wednesday we had a MLC meeting to get us all ready for MAY! We have this goal to have every companionship have 4 baptisms in the month of May! It is going to be called "MAYracle"!!!! After that meeting I was so pumped to work 1000% and achieve this goal! We spent the next 2 days delivering this message to all the districts in the zone! (Going to all the districts made me realize how old I am! I was the 2nd or 3rd oldest out of the whole zone ewwww!!!) I was so excited, full of hope and ready to just work harder than I ever have in my whole life!

Then Friday hit and things just started crashing down! At about 5PM we were supposed to have a baptism for Sister lugbla but she ended up calling me and freaking out because her boss wouldn’t let her off work. Then at the same time 15 other people decided to call me with a huge load of problems, all of them wanting us to fix the problems! And to make it better some of the YW were having some problems and pulled us to the side and just bawled their eyes out. That night I just prayed and prayed that I would be able to help his children! I don't know how much helping I did but I tried my best! lugbla didn't get baptized that night and rescheduled it for Saturday. Saturday came around and she came to the church bawling because her parents wouldn't let her get baptized. It was so sad because she has wanted this so much for so long! Satan is just working so hard on her... it breaks my heart. We just have to remember that God has a plan for her and will help her. Keep her in your prayers!

We have this other investigator who is SO amazing! She lives 3 hours away and has major back problems but still comes to church! She wants to get baptized but the only problem is that she is married but not legally. They would get married legally through the government but the problem is that her husband has declared bankruptcy and if they get married through the government she would have to pay all his debts…and they would lose everything. It was so sad talking to them at church yesterday. They were telling me how they have been "married" for 30 years and all they want is to be members of this church! We are currently in the process of figuring something out so they can enter into the covenant with God! Pray for them as well please! We also have this really cute investigator who is 17 and literally learned everything before she started learning with us! She wants to follow God with exactness!

One thing I have really been thinking about this week is EXERCISING faith! For example in our goal to get 4 baptisms per companionship we can have 100% faith that it will happen, but if we just sit there and don't put in any effort and only have faith nothing will come of it! "Faith without works is dead!" Earlier this week Sister Forte and I came up with some goals and thought, "Great, we are going to achieve every one of these goals!" Three days later we looked at them and realized we had not been doing anything special to achieve them. We realized that exercising faith is really putting in all your effort towards the Lord’s will. For us that meant making measurable little goals to achieve our big goals! When we exercise our faith instead of just having faith, God works miracles! I know that this is true because I have seen it in my own life and the lives of the people in the scriptures! We need to go and DO!

For p-day today we are going to go to a zoo! I hope you all have a great week! Thanks for all your love and support! LOVE YOU ALL!!!

-Sister Herrmann

PS We aren't allowed to take taxis anymore so we have to be smart and use #thaicitytransportationlife. It has been super interesting but super FUN! Wow, I am sitting here crying in the internet cafe about Moki and her cancer diagnosis. It is so sad. I really didn’t think she would actually die while I was gone. She is such a part of our family, I can’t imagine life without her.

The official name of Thailand is really long! 

April 21, 2015

4/20/15 - Songkran

So much has happened these past 2 weeks! It has been so crazy with Songkran, conference and transfers! Sister Forte and I are so happy that we are staying together here in บางกะปี! Conference was amazing! I learned so much and realized that I have so much to work on and to improve! Listening really made me grateful for my Savior and the opportunity to change and have a second chance at things! I am so excited to start applying everything that I have learned!

Songkran is a three day celebration of the New Year started Monday and went through Wednesday! It is celebrated by throwing and shooting water on everyone symbolic of washing away all sins and bad luck. So on Monday morning at 6:00 AM we woke up and we're ready to play!!  We went to Siam and it was the craziest thing I have ever experienced! There literally wasn't one person not soaked from head to toe! It was like everyone in the whole country turned 12 years old again, pouring and shooting water on each other. By the end of the night we were burnt to a crisp and exhausted. The next 2 days were supposed to be normal missionary work days but it was a little hard because everyone was playing so no one could meet with us and the moment we stepped outside we were drenched! We made numerous calls and when we went to go get lunch or had to go somewhere we would get on our bikes and everyone would try to pull us off and get us to stop and play! And the best part was getting large buckets of water pounded in our faces while riding to an appointment! Haha, good times! Even an activity at the church ended up in a huge water fight...there literally was no way around Songkran! Those couple days were really fun but it was good to have them over! We were ready for all our people to come back to reality and meet and learn again!

These past 2 weeks we had so many miracles! Recently we have been contacting a lot of nice old men! One night we were inviting at the park and right as we were about to leave an old man ran up to us and said, “Ok, I accept, I'm ready to lean about this!" We got his number and made an appointment for the next day. When we met with him he told us that when he was a little child he would see the Elders inviting and riding their bikes and sometimes they would talk with him. When he saw us inviting at the park he had a small flashback to his childhood and it sparked those good memories which led him to come talk with us! He is now on the pathway to baptism! It is just so amazing to me how God really does watch over his sheep. Talking about sheep, one day we were inviting and this guy said, "Hey, I'm a Mormon too, but I haven't been to church since I was a child! I have been trying to find it!" YAY, we were so happy to find another lost sheep of God.

On Sunday I made a goal to talk to everyone in the sacrament meeting room before church started! I started with this one lady and she was so nice! I asked her if she knew anyone interested in the gospel and as soon as I said that she perks up and points to the lady next to her saying, "MY SISTER IS!!" Apparently her sister had been to church 2 times already but hadn't met the missionaries! We taught her after church and she is so excited to get baptized on the 3rd!!

Sister อัน got baptized and she was the cutest thing ever! (One of the best parts of missionary work for me is feeling the excitement and happiness of those who commit both before and after their baptism!) She is so funny, after something good happens, like someone getting baptized or receiving the Holy Ghost, she claps and says, "yaaaay!!" We also had a baptism for sister กุง! She has one of the strongest testimonies ever! I am so proud of her! A couple weeks ago at zone conference President Senior said that we could only go to Swensons (an ice cream place) after district meeting if we baptized a waitress there. We took that to heart and baptized her! Next week we have 4 of our investigators who we have been working with for a long time planning on getting baptized! It is an exciting time here in บวงกะปี!!!

With all the excitement about the temple coming to Thailand I have been thinking a lot about something I can do special for the Lord to show my gratitude! The only thing that came to my mind was to consecrate myself 100%. In our baptismal covenants we promise to take upon us the name of Jesus Christ which means we see ourselves as his, we put him and his work first in our lives, and we seek what he wants rather than what we want or what the world teaches us to want. I have been really trying to consecrate myself and so far it has been great! I honestly couldn't be happier! I love being a missionary!! Be safe. LOVE YOU ALL!!

- Sister Herrmann
General Conference Breakfast
We didn't even plan to be matching! 
We are weird but we have fun! 
Look who we ran into!?
Switch-off at Bangnaa