Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Hey family

I hope dinner was tasty. I tried to get this email out before you went to bed. This week has been fun.
Last Monday Elder Lesueur, the Elders in Warin( the other elder area in the district), and I learned how to make our favorite Thai dish Nam tok. It is surprisingly easy. I'm finding the more Thai food I learn how to make, the more I realize that Thai food is really really easy to make. Really all Thai food is is taking rice, meat and throw it into a pot with some seasonings and presto you have a plate of food.
The next few days not a whole lot got done because we took a day off so that Elder Lesueur could recover from the flu. No it wasn't bad, but we just wanted him to recover quickly so that we can work fully with our energy. By the next day he was back to his normal happy self and we were working again.
On Wednesday I decided to take a day to switch off with Elder Baker the senior companion in Warin so that I could see if I could learn the area a little bit. Warin is about 25 min by bike ride to the south of Ubon. Between us there is a river that is really sweet view. When I get the chance I'll take a picture and send it to you. The water of the river isn't too pretty to look at but the jungle on the sides are.
Warin is a lot more like Sakon in that there is a lot less city. Its more in the countryside. But there are a lot of different neighborhoods to invite and find families. We spent most of the day in the sun. Looking for people to teach. For what Elder Baker has been reporting to me every night we found a family that night that we thought had been formal investigators but weren't but are learning and will be coming to church.
Thursday Elder Lesueur and I were back in Ubon together. Ubon has 5 investigators that have dates to get baptized currently. We saw a few of them that night. One is a lady named Mai. She is way sweet. As we have been teaching her she literally will teach herself. For example. the last time we saw her we taught her about the process of repentance. I like to use an example of me stealing bread( there is a stereo type here in Thailand where white people like to eat bread.....this coming for the guy who buys a 1 1/2 loafs of bread every week) from 7-11. So I asked her after I stole the bread what was the first thing that she thought that I needed to do to repent. She replied, Well if I was you elder, I think in order to repent I would first have to learn and know that stealing that bread was a sin. 1 recognizing sins. I didn't teach her anything before that. Next I asked her, so could I steal bread after I knew it was a sin and call it repentance, she said no, that wouldn't be true repentance. you would have to stop altogether, 2. stop sinning, I then asked her, so After I stopped then am I finished with repenting. She said no you would have to tell the person you wronged, in this case it would be the 7-11 manager and then pay for the bread and anything else that they require to make up for it. 4 fixing the wrong cause. Then we taught her about confessing the sin in prayer, 3. confession. and then I asked OK so
I repented from stealing that bread if I went in and stole a chochlate bar would I have still repented. she replyed well no because you are still stealing. If you truly repented when you tell Father in Heaven that you won't steal again its not just for bread but for everything you need to follow the commandment. Bingo. 5. Keep the commandments. She has been really fun to teach. If everything goes well she will be baptised in about a month.
There also is another investigator who recently passed the baptismal interview, his name is Bead or Duck in English. He will be getting baptized on the 25th this month. We are way excited for him. He has been learning with the Elders for the last year, and now he has made all the changes in his life to be able to get baptized. Its going to be a few really good weeks for us as our investigators get baptized.
In the coming week we are having a mission tour. And being the District leader Elder Lesueur and I have had some things to do to prepare for it. Normally when the missionaries in the zone get together for meetings they come to Ubon. So I have to find a hotel for the Elders to stay the night before, a way of feeding, and transportation for Elder Perkins from the Area presidency. Thankfully Elder Lesueur knew the area really well and the members love to help out. So as of now I think we have everything sorted out. I can't wait for Friday. That's when the meeting is.
Well I want to tell a quick story to explain the subject line. Last night Elder Lesueur and I were out after teaching a lesson on our way home. As we were riding our bike it started to sprinkle. I think we were probably 20 min or so away form our home so I didn't think we were going to have too much of a problem. Then again this is Thailand. So about 5 min later the rain goes from a light drizzle to a heavy downpour which is unexplainable to Utah standards. Within a few minutes, we were soaked through and still 10 minutes from our home. So we put our heads down and kept going. It started raining so hard that it hurt. It was a lot of fun to look on the sides of the road and see the faces people were making as they saw two white guys bike by in shirts and ties in the rain. We even got some calls of su-su or keeping fighting or ya yahm paa or don't accept defeat. The best part of the whole story is what happened when we were a few blocks from our house. as I crossed an intersection I looked up just in time to see the river of water I was about to ride into. As we went onto the flooded main street Elder Leseuer and I kept pushing forward. I had the thought that I was swimming because that water was 2 feet. We got home safe and sound and then cleaned up for bed. Its way crazy in 15 minutes the street flooded everywhere. I remember before my mission I always wanted to see flooding and now I can say that I had to ride my bike through floods to get home. lol
Anyways I am out of time
I love you
Elder Brandon John Holt

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