This week I had my eyes opened.
Last Monday was one of the hardest days in the mission so far. I have realized that some days it just feels like there is a dark cloud over your head, continually raining on your parade. We started out the day waking up a little late because the alarm didn't go off. We have our P days planned out so thoroughly that if we aren't like perfect with timing, then everything is messed up.
Well we ended up being a little late to a few things and then we headed to emails a little late. Then we headed over to the middle of the city to meet up with everyone. We met with all these members and other Vietnamese Elders and we headed off to go play soccer. We had some fun and everything was going alright. Then our appointment fell through with both our investigators so we decided to get the groceries we needed with the time we had.
We went to this newly built super store; it had a whole bunch of American food products and things! The only catch was that a box of Lucky Charms was almost 15 dollars. We ended up not getting any groceries because they were all over priced. I did get a big piece of delicious looking carrot cake for 50 cents.
We left the store and were on our way home. We were riding for a while and I heard a motorcycle coming up beside me which wasn't unusual. I turned thinking it might be a member or something. I yelled out "Hey!", but as the word left my mouth I realized he was grabbing my backpack containing my Scriptures, Soccer Cleats and clothes, my ipod that I had put conference talks on, the keys to the house and the church, and my wallet with my mission debit card and insurance card, and THE CARROT CAKE!
He grabbed my bag and sped off. I kicked it into the highest gear and the chase was on! I was yelling after him and we chased him down almost three streets before we lost him.
My first thought was, "Dang, I was really looking forward to that Cake..." .
After about two minutes a man came riding up, and stopped next to us. Immediately after that another two boys came riding up. They were all members of the Khmer Branches. They said they heard what happened and one of the men said that he saw the man and chased him on his motorcycle! I was speechless that these people acted so quickly and baffled at how they caught word so fast (haha). I couldn't believe how quick to serve these people really are. I got choked up a bit… mostly about how much these members cared… and a little because I really wanted that cake.
Tuesday was a lot better! We had Zone Conference which only happens once every two transfers. We all get to meet together with the Mission President and receive wisdom from him for like six hours. It was really long but they played some videos and we talked a lot about how we can improve… so I felt that it was worth it.
(Quick side note: If you haven't seen the Mormon message titled, “The Hope of God's Light” , then I suggest you watch it as soon as possible.) We learned a whole bunch of stuff and they fed us like candy the whole time so it was amazing.
That afternoon we decided we should do something about the keys to the house. We rode around and found a guy who makes key copies and stuff. I found pretty quickly that this key business is pretty sketchy seeing as in the time we told him what we needed him to do, three men came by asking if he could make a key to a motorcycle's ignition that had been cut out. I think they were all stolen. I hear that is common. It took him a while to do it, but he made our keys for about 5 bucks.
I almost forgot! This whole past week was a Buddhist Holiday that lasts all week. The city felt like a ghost town, especially at night. All the shops were closed and stuff.
Wednesday was pretty normal, and then we had English class. We didn't have as many people as we had originally planned for because it has been raining like crazy here. When it rains, usually people don't ever come.
Then on Friday we met with a guy who has been moving around a lot recently, because he doesn't have a job… and the last people like kicked him out. The reason he got kicked out wasn't because of the fact he doesn't have a job, it is because he won't stop trying to teach them the gospel! His name is Chu Canh. He is an amazing guy. Everywhere he goes, he tries to share the gospel. We met with him and he told us about how he is looking for a job, and he is staying in our area for the time being. He has only been around here for about a week and said he has talked to almost everyone where he lives and that he had some referrals for us! He is incredible. He truly lives the scripture Romans 1:16.
Saturday, we met with a few investigators and also met one of the sister's investigators for a Baptismal interview. Then we went to a member's house and had a family home evening. After, I thought I would ask if she knew anyone around the area that was Vietnamese. She said there was a wealthy family that lived down the road. We rode around looking for it and stumbled into a group of guys standing on the corner. It was pretty late so I was debating whether or not it was smart to chance getting mugged again. I gathered my courage and rode over to say Hello.
After a few minutes I found that the men spoke Vietnamese! There were 15 of them that lived here and worked on the wood work for the mansions around the neighborhood. I explained why we were out this late and why we were in Cambodia. Then they asked us about English Class. They were all super interested in English Class!
Yesterday was crazy! This was the first time in my life that I passed the Sacrament without shoes (haha). We woke up in the morning before church and it was raining very hard. As it got closer to the time for church to start I prepared myself mentally for what I knew was ahead. We opened the gate and as I expected, the streets were flooding. It was only like a foot deep by our house, so I decided to keep on my shoes and stuff on.
We rode down a few streets and got to the railroad. To my amazement, the water was up to the windows of the cars… easily up to my chest. We decided to take a detour through a little village and came out on the other side where the water was only up to about our waists. We rode through it and I got completely drenched. When we arrived at church, so as to not track water all over the place they told me to just come in without shoes. It was a good day. That was my week! Definitely had its ups and downs, but I have decided that I am grateful for the hard points of the week. It really reminded me of who is really in charge. Thank you all. Love you tons!