Saturday, August 9, 2014

Week 25/Week 17 Cambodia: Land of Delivery Pizza?!?! Monday September 16, 2013

Monday, September 16, 2013-8:07 PM/Sunday, September 15, 2013 10:14 PM
Cambodia: Land of Delivery Pizza?!?!

Dear Family,

Does anyone like pizza? I don't know if you realize how lucky America is to have great pizza. Pizza is a wonderful food. Maybe Elder Walker Johnson can make me some wonderful pizza after our missions :). Well, even being in a third-world country we have pizza! So Elder Lyman and I decided on having it delivered to our house at about 8:30 pm on Friday the 13th! Haha that was our celebration for that day.

This week was fantastic! So many things happened and it was so much fun. Let's see, last Monday after we emailed Elder Lyman and I proselyted and tried to meet with a half-investigator. He wasn't home so we decided to play keep the ball in the air with tons of little kids. They thought it was hilarious that two barangs (Cambodian for Frenchman, that is what they call all white people) would play with them.

This week I went on 2 exchanges. With Elder Lyman and Elder Blocker (another elder in my house) being Zone leaders they have to go on exchanges with district leaders and Elder Lyman has to go on exchanges with our district too. So the first exchange was me and Elder Khem. He is a full Cambodian...from Texas :). Haha. He is Elder Blocker's comp. So the two ZLs left to different areas for a day so Elder Khem and I had our whole branch as our area for a day. We had a full day scheduled but many fell through. However, I think they fell through for a reason. In the time that they were scheduled we contacted 3 young men who were going to a university. They all knew how to pray and believed in God. So hopefully this week we can meet with them and teach them. It was really cool though because i know the Spirit directed me to where to go. We found them in less than 2 minutes. The Lord was directing us. Later that day we taught an investigator and a less active named Ganiga. She is like 23 and has been a member for a year or two but doesn't come to church because her family does not support her at all. Her younger sister was one week away from baptism then randomly just stopped learning and didn't want to join. That was sad. But we visited her and she has a strong testimony of Joseph Smith because I asked what her favorite story from the Book of Mormon was and she just talked about Joseph Smith. She told us everything that is in Preach My Gospel about it. She is awesome. The rest of the exchange was good. We just taught two other less actives in Elder Khem's area the next morning.

English class this week was fun. It was on Happiness. So for the Gospel discussion we decided to reinact the story of the Prodigal Son. (I didn't know this before but prodigal means wasteful, interesting). Anyways I was the good son and Elder Lyman was the father. Elder Blocker was the prodigal son and Elder Khem was the party people (the prodigal son's friends). It was a lot of fun.

I just want to say that Elder Lyman is wonderful. He is 6'3", from Logan, Utah, loves basketball and football, plays the piano and loves Les Mis, doesn't sing but he likes music, and he is an awesome missionary. He is very patient and loving with the people. Oh, and he likes good food :).

So we get along pretty well :).

I had another exchange from Thursday to Friday. I went to a different area with a Khmae elder named Elder Keo (Guy-oh). He is really nice and quite but loves teaching. We ate at a wonderful khmae restaurant and had this food called cha gruing, cha means fry and gruing is a type of seasoning thing that they use a lot in food. It is really good.

Sunday! The best day of the week! Why? Because the Sacrament and baptisms! Yesterday, I was asked to pass the sacrament. I was super excited to do it again. I miss passing the sacrament. It is such a wonderful feeling knowing that you are acting as the Lord while passing the sacrament. I loved it. A lady actually quoted Les Mis in her talk today too. That was impressive. Also, we had a baptism!!!! Last week I talked about Ray. He got baptized this week. He has been a golden investigator wanting to do the right thing, taking each commitment like it was a bowl of ice cream, and even already helping us teach other people the gospel. Ray has been prepared by the Lord and has a wonderful testimony. He teaches too with clarity so he is a wonderful help. It was a beautiful service.

So I want to talk about some cultural things. First, food. The food here is probably 75% chas, or stir fry dishes. Probably most things you eat are fried in oil. So not always the healthiest thing. The only things they don't fry is fruit, which can be expensive :P. For breakfast, if you eat the khmae breakfast, it is baay saec chrut (buy psych jroot). It literally translates to: rice flesh pig. It is a box of rice with pork strips on it with some pickled vegetables and seasonings on top, sometimes served with an egg. It is very good depending on where you go. Sometimes they give you a soup (more of a broth than soup but yeah whatever) too. We shop in markets outside and the food just sitting there in the open. But I haven't gotten sick yet from food :). Also, we bleach a lot of our food or cook it really hot so most germs/bacteria/other stuff dies. We do have some supermarkets here the equivalent of Smith's back home. It is called Lucky's and we go every week. Elder Lyman and I have a standard 4 now: cereal, milk, bread, and yogurt. The cereal is expensive but when you get 6 bowls from spending 6 dollars on one box of cereal and milk, then that is definitely worth it. It is awesome.

Now for my language. My language has gradually improved. I can talk about the first 4 lessons with pretty good detail. Lesson 5 is still hard with all the commandments like chastity and tithing and fasting. I think that my understanding and listening is a little better than my speaking but I'm trying to increase my vocabulary. Some days it is easier and some days it is harder. My reading is getting slowly better. I can read the letters it is just slow sometimes but reading is really quite fun! It feels like reading elvish.

So I love my mission! Thank you all for the prayers on my behalf. I love you all. May God hold you in the palm of His Hand.

Elder Johnson

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