Elder Smith

Elder Smith
Write to him at: Elder Samuel Smith Cambodia Phnom Penh Mission House 2B, Street 222, Off Norodom Blvd PO Box 165 Phnom Penh Cambodia email address: shsmith@myldsmail.net

Monday, July 27, 2015

Saviors on Mount Zion Week #3

Elder Smith and his new super cute short haircut!

Whats up peeps. Just to start off this E-mail in a awesome manner, one of the main star wars languages is just Cambodian played backwards... So that means I will be tri lingual in a way when I get back! So sick! 

Well a couple days ago my companion and I went to the TRC (its where volunteer/members come and we "home-teach" them, we both speak cambodian) and we had to talk in all khmer, I was so nervous and really didnt want to mess it up. I was praying so hard before for the Lord to help me, and boy let me tell you HE did. Elder Denkers and I gave an entire lesson in Khmer for 20 minutes straight. I was blown away. It wasnt all grammatically correct, but we were speaking KHMER and the dude totally understood us. When we left the room we were on cloud nine. Its probably been my favorite experience so far in the MTC. I've learned more Khmer is 3 weeks than the 2 years of spanish i took in high school. Only becuase the Lord has blessed me, cause there is no way that was me. Thats for sure. 

Well one of the Elders in my dorm is kinda a clean dude, so Elder Riches and I sowed a piece of floss that was like 10 feet long to his pillow and then we started pulling it, and literally he like flipped out., He thought there were spiders of somehing in his bed. I was dying. He was frieked out but realized it was a joke. Funny stuff.

We had a devo yesterday by an Area Seventy and he said something that was really profound. He said" You elders have signed up to be Saviors on Mount Zion". It hit me like a rock. there were like 2 thousand missionaries in the room and we all felt the power he was saying. He said our responbibilty is a lot bigger than we think. Its time to grow up and find the people the Lord needs in his church. One of the best talks Ive ever heard. 

If any of you guys arent busy I would recommend looking up Alma 26:27-29 its about how the sons of mosiah went through some really tough stuff but never gave up. Its awesome.

its so crazy to see how much you learn in such a short amount of time. The Lord truly does love us and he wants all of us to grow and FRIENDship with him. He's such a good guy. I've really come to know that. This church is true and I'm so stoked to be apart of it. Khnom str3lang all of you guys.


    Wednesday, July 22, 2015

    Week #2 MTC!

    Whats up guys! First of all, I got a haricut cause I was like why not and they pretty much shaved my head off. So I like to think of myself as a legitimate monk. Its so short.... Well I'm two weeks down and it feels awesome. I feel like I really got the whole schedule down. My companion and I are figuring everything out. We finally dont feel like newbies anymore. Well this week we've done a ton of language study and teaching. Every time I teach its so cool because im speaking only khmer, but its so frustrating because I only know a certain amount of words and I can communicate like I want to. I've had to realize that its just going to take time and a whole lot of patience. I prayed a lot to have a true desire to learn this language because after the 7th hour of language study I feel like I want to die, ha but we watched this video on these missionaries teaching this guy and he committed to baptism. Idk why but the spirit was just so strong and I could just see myself in a room in Cambodia teaching a family and making there lives a whole lot better. I gave a lesson in Priesthood yesterday and while I was studying I realized that there are people who the Lord has put on the Earth for US. Its our responsibility to find them. They deserve to hear the gospel. Its not about us, its about the people who want to find the truth. 

    The cool thing about the khmer language is that a lot of the words translate in such a funny way from English. When you say "Hey could I have a glass of milk" in khmer you're literally saying "Hey can i have a glass of breast water from Cow?" hahaha. Praecet is Repent and it translates to "Change in heart". When we ask a fake investigator to repent we ask them to change their heart. I though that was so cool. 

    Our branch president is President Penrod. He's an awesome guy. He came into our class one day and talked about how we're so lucky to be in South East Asia. He gets to look at all the numbers and graphs of the baptisms and he said the Lord's hand is in our area right now. Cambodia had over a 1000 baptisms last year, Theres only like 50 or 60 companionships there. So pumped to hear the work is progressing thereI love the MTC, but every day we just get more and more excited.  

    Every Sunday we are supposed to prepare a 5 minute talk on a topic and they just announce the 2 speakers right before they have to speak. So you can prepare and be ready or just hope you dont get called and pray. So Elder Rom toatlly forgot to prepare and they called him. Our whole distrct knew so we started to laugh, but he gave one of the most powerful talks I've ever heard. I started to tear up. His testimony about faith and the gospel is amazing. It inspired everyone. Then a super small asian guy who's speaking Mong went up and shared one of the coolest stories ever. The missionares came to his house and taught him when he was 14. Only he and his mom would listen to him. His father was totally against it. He felt the spirit and wanted to get baptized, but his father wouldnt hear it. He said he cried and prayed every night for two years to have the chance to get baptized. He never lost faith and never doubted God. Such a cool guy. It gave me such a different perspective on baptism and how many people want it so bad, but cant. 

    Also thank you for the Dear Elders and the packaged cinnamon rolls. Its so nice to hear from you guys after A long day. 
    P.S. Thanks Darcie for the popcorn and the letter. Love  you guys!

    Tuesday, July 21, 2015

    Week 1--MTC!

    Well well what a week. I dont think I've learned more about myself in such a short period of time. It's been amazing, but also really tough in a positive way if that makes any sense.  Right when I left you guys I got my name tag, they showed me my room and threw me in a classroom. Within a minute of being there our language teacher came in and we began. I was still teary from saying goodbye but everyone in the classroom had to suck it up and start working. 

    One thing I've learned here is that the Lord doesn't waste time. I've had to learn that we are no longer on our own time. It's actually a pretty hard transition to make. It belongs to the Lord now. We study the language for about 7 hours a day and then another 2 or 3 with the scriptures and preach my gospel. I've come to grow an amazing desire for the scriptures. I love reading them and seeing all the amazing sacrifices the prophets have made.  Being in the MTC has made everything have a purpose. My prayers and just the way I go about my day all have meaning. It's a great way to live. 

    My companion is Elder Denkers. He's a total CHAMP. I love him to death. We have a ton of fun together and can relate to each other so well. The other two guys who we live with are amazing. One guy is called Elder Beckstead who is just like Jordan Allen. He literally drinks 4 cups of milk for every meal.  He's hilarious and probably is one of the most positive guys I've ever met. Elder Richens is from Mesa Arizona and is one of the deepest thinkers I've ever talked too. I literally could talk to him all day and never get bored. Hes like a national wrestler too which is cool. Hes going to the Y after and I can tell we are going to be buds. Total baller. We have a cambodian elder in our District.Hes from Athens, Georgia so he talks like a black dude but he's asian. Wierdest/funniest duo ever.  His mother ran away from pol plot and escaped to America. He's 25 has tons of tattoos and a convert but acts like hes 18. We were in the temple today and he fell asleep during the session and when it was quiet he like totally started sleep talking loudly while it was all quiet. I was dying. We had to wake him up.  He's the power in our district. Hes made me cry like 5 times with the spirit he brings. Every single person in our district is amazing. Everyone is so chill and so open about everything. I feel like I've known them forever. 

    The language is really really rough. Our teacher isnt allowed to speak English to us, so it forces us to try even harder to learn. Within two days we had to teach a full lesson in Cambodian... I almost started laughing right when we started. It was so bad. Everything we said made no sense cause we cant say anything right. We have to learn the romanized version in order to learn the language so we're technically learning a language in order to learn a language. Talk about hard stuff. The thing I've learned the most is how important prayer is. I've had to rely on him for almost everything. I probably say like 50 prayers a day. I've come to understand how much we need him. Its literally impossible for all of us to do this without him. Ive only been here for like 5 days but I can say a prayer and talk a little bit. Its insane. I love it. 

    Thanks for the package. We get mail here everyday so If any of you guys are feeling some love for Sam packages and letters are always fun to get. A lot of people use Dear Elder.com

    Lots of love for you guys

    Elder Smith