Despite all the people that know us and hate us (because there's some people that we have literally contacted upwards of 10 times and asked them to come wash their sins away), there are a few very friendly people on the market street. specifically the two guys that sell fried chicken. they're twins actually, and i still can't really tell them apart. they love us though, which means that every time we go to buy fried chicken...they say, "Promotion! you get a free cup!" which is the best thing ever. because it's the best fried chicken i've ever tasted. but then it totally defeats all the self-control i had mustered up just to ask for ONE cup of fried chicken. I was trying to cut back on my crazy eating habits, and then they go and ruin it by giving me a free cup. so then naturally i had to finish all of it. so yeah. them and the toast lady. she's super nice too. we told her we can't spend money on sundays, so she gave us free toast. and coco yen. which is like frozen hot chocolate.
random things that i've left out of my last letters: we've become part of the choir. they're practicing some easter songs to perform in April for the stake. So we practice as a ward, and then we practice with other wards every once in a while. before we got involved, i wish we would have known a few things...1. it takes SO much time. well...i guess only a few hours out of our sunday. but still. 2. everyone here is a little less than musically inclined. i try to sing as loud as i can so people around me can hear the tune, but i still can't hear myself. 3. it's really hard to read notes and thai words at the same time. 3. when i say we became part of the choir, we also have to plunk out the parts for everyone on the piano too. soooo there's not really a way out at this point.
yesterday was amazing!
We're happy, we're working hard, and seeing miracles. Last Sunday we had an English student show up to church for the first time. It was fast and testimony meeting, and there seemed to be a central theme of prayer. I looked over at one point and she was crying. She told me she wanted to have a good experience like everyone else had had with prayer. I told her she definitely could. And then I talked to her about baptism. She said it was something that she wanted, but that she needed time to study first...but then she thought for a second and then said, "Or should I get baptized first and then study?" Yes, that one. I told her we would teach her everything she needed to know, and then she could be baptized the following Sunday. We would help her to continue to study and learn after she was baptized too. Baptism is just the beginning. We met with her on Tuesday and Saturday, and taught her EVERYTHING. She definitely had doubts, questions, fears, etc. about changing her religion, which was all she knew for her 40+ years of life. But she knew baptism was important, and she was willing to do it. The experience I had on Sunday at the baptismal program was different than any of the others I've had so far on my mission. Usually we join the other members and get to see the person go down into the water, and come back up. This time we were helping this sweet lady prepare to go into the font. There were two other girls getting baptized that day too, so we were just waiting with them in the bathroom, until it was there turn to enter through the back of the font and go down the stairs into the water. I know it was just any ordinary bathroom, but the Spirit was there. Being behind the scenes, we got to see them right before they were baptized, and right after they came out of the font back into the bathroom, dripping wet, a little cold, but SO happy. The woman that we sent into the baptismal font was a different person than the woman who came out of it. By our own standards, we may have thought she wasn't "converted" enough to be baptized, or that she needed a little more time. But when I saw her come out of the water, something had changed in her. I know that baptism is a new birth, and that these people are becoming new creatures in Christ.
Have a wonderful week!