Monday, March 23, 2015

New adventures ahead

Hello everyone! Well another week down already! This was another great week here in Cambodia! So this week I did some fun things and some things that I thought would be fun that turned out different than I expected! Ha anyway, so first of all this week I was able to go on an exchange with Elder Lauritzen! It was super fun! At the beginning of the day we decided that we were going to work as hard as we possibly could! And we did!!:) We had lots of lessons and were able to visit lots of members, as well as have some good contacts in between the lessons! It was a blast!! By the end of the day, we both smelled soooo terrible, but we felt proud of the stench that we gave off!!:) haha He is a hard worker and I'm pretty sure he is way further ahead of where I was when I was his age in the mission as far as the language goes!

Another thing that I did this week was I had the chance to be able to go and be a translator for this organization called Operation Smile! When I heard about it, I was super pumped because I have not yet had the chance to be able to go and be a translator for someone else… especially for a doctor who helps people for free! So I was super stoked! They told me I was to go on Thursday from 12:00-4:00 and so when Thursday came around, I was at the hospital by about 11:45!! It took me a while to find them because they didn't tell me where to meet and I was trying to explain to the front desk lady what I was there for, but she did not seem to know where they were either. Then this guy just came out of nowhere and asked me if I was there for Operation Smile and I told him yes, and then he told me to follow I did! Haha Anyway, we found them and they gave us these plastic chairs (that were too small for me) and just told us to hang out in this big room and when they needed a translator they would just call me over! So do you all want to guess how many times I translated that day? It wasn't easy, but I managed to keep track of how many times I translated for the doctors that day!! A whopping 1 time!!! I was so ticked! We just sat on those plastic chairs for 4 hours and waited and then the one time I translated she called me over and asked me to ask the patient if there was anywhere on him that hurt....yeah... I looked at her to make sure she was serious because this dude had literally just got out of surgery from his mouth getting completely redone, but she just looked at me like, "Well, go ahead and ask him." So I did! He looked at me kind of weird and I kind of gave him the "it's not me… it’s the crazy doctor" look and then he just pointed at his mouth and I figured there was no need for me to translate that back to her haha… so yeah, that was the extent of my translating! I really feel like that experience was a huge help in really stretching me in the language...NOT!! So yeah, it kinda sucked and I would have much rather been out proselyting and helping my investigators, but I guess looking back now it's kind of funny how big of a joke it was!!! Ha the only thing that was cool that came out of it was that I met a doctor who was actually Mormon as well and she took down my mom’s number and told me that she was going to call my mom and let her know that I was happy and healthy! Ha she was a really nice lady so that was pretty lucky that I got to meet her!!

Hmm… I think the only other funny thing that happened to me this week was I finally convinced my companion to get rid of his unibrow! I have been trying to convince him to get rid of it since we started being companions and he finally agreed to let me pluck a gap in between his two eyebrows!! Haha that probably sounds really rude that I told my companion that he has a unibrow haha, but here they like to speak EXTREMELY straightforward when it comes to things like that so I guess I have become kind of numb to whether or not that would be offensive to a white person or not! Haha anyway, it took me like an hour to pluck all of his hairs, which is understandable considering that there literally used to be no gap haha, but now he is looking super sharp and all of the American Elders have been complimenting him on his new and improved look!! Haha I must say that he really is much better looking with that baby out of the way!!:) haha

Church was super good this week! We had investigators show up to church, which was awesome!! The lady that I talked about last week is still progressing and yesterday we watched the Joseph Smith video with her and at the end when Joseph Smith's father gets baptized she just smiled and told me that soon she would get to do that too!:) She is so amazing!! Another really cool thing that happened at church this week was there is this kid in my ward and he is super cool and he is around 19 years old! When I first got into the area I kind of made friends with him and when I first got here I asked him if he had a desire to go and serve a mission and he told me that he did not really want to go on a mission. Well, as I have been serving here, I have been trying to teach him and show him just how amazing and fun and spiritual missionary work is and I have tried to take him with me to lots of investigator’s houses so he can practice teaching as well. So this week at church we were talking and out of the blue he just told me that he wanted to turn his papers in this year!! I was sooooo pumped!! There was another story exactly like this a couple weeks ago! I don't know if I told you guys or not… I forgot already! Anyway, when he told me that, I was so pumped! And now he has tons of time to help us go out and teach our investigators because he is on a break from school! I was so pumped to be able to talk to him and be able to show him how amazing this work is, and through the convincing power of the Holy Ghost he has changed his mind and decided to go and serve the Lord!! Oh so sick!!:) I love this work!! I love my mission!!:) So after church this week we usually have that Preach My Gospel class, but this week Elder Lauritzen and his companion had a baptism, so we invited all of the student that usually go to the Preach My Gospel class to go to the baptism instead so there could be a lot of people there to support him!! It was a good baptism and the Spirit was super strong as well!! Overall this week was a lot of fun!!

Oh and one more thing happened this week… I almost forgot to tell you....TRANSFER CALLS!!! So the Zone Leaders called and told me that this transfer I am leaving Stung Meanchey!! I am not going to lie, when they told me that my heart sank a little bit because I just love this area so much and I have had so many amazing things happen here so I was a little bummed to be leaving so soon!! But I know that this new area is right where Heavenly Father wants me to be!! I am going to serve in Kampong Cham!! Literally everyone that I have talked to says that it is a super cool place to be serving!! It's a province, so that's going to be sick!! Another cool think is that my area is actually like 25 miles out from Kampong Cham! So I live with just my companion in our own house! The other Elders live in the city, but we live at a place called Skun! And that's our proselyting area! Where I am going to serve, we actually don't even have a church building! It's just a rental house, but then apparently every 3 weeks all of the members take the long ride to Kampong Cham to worship at the church building that we have there! So yeah, I am going to be in the middle of nowhere so that will be sweet!!:) ha It's a really new area so apparently there are not really any less active members so we just will be trying to find new investigators and people to teach, so that's pretty cool!!:) Honestly I am super excited, but it's just super hard saying goodbye to such an amazing ward like this one here in Stung Meanchey!! It really is just as hard as saying goodbye to family! I just don't know when I will be able to see them all again and I just love them all so much!! It's so hard saying goodbye!! That's literally the worst and hardest part about missions!! Becoming so close to all these amazing members and then having to say goodbye and not knowing when you might see them all again! Plus I have already served here twice, so the chances of my coming back and serving here again are like slim to none! Dang it man!! Haha I already feel homesick!! Not homesick like from America, but homesick as in my home here in Stung Meanchey!! I have been here for so long and could easily fill out the rest of my mission here with great pleasure!! But I know that Skun has great things in store for me as well and I am excited to go and have a sweet adventure over there!! :) Oh yeah, and my companion’s name is Elder Xiong haha… he is American! I know- I was surprised too!! Ha he came out in the same group as Elder Lauritzen and he said that he is just the sweetest guy ever and super easy to get along with, so that's super good news to hear considering it will just be the two of us posted up out in the middle of nowhere!! Haha how cool!! Just gonna go live in the boondocks in Cambodia for a couple months!!:) Can't wait for the adventures that lay ahead!! Well, that's all that I have got for you this week! I am sure that I will have lots to tell you all when I get into my new area!! Well, I have to get going! I have got to go say a lot of sad goodbyes!! Not fun!! Haha wish me luck!! Much love to you all!!:)

Elder Steadman:)

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