Sunday, June 29, 2014

Week 33: NO PAIN, NO GAME(;


OK, where to start.  WOW what a week.  It started out with an email from Sister Moon who is turning into one of my good friends.  Her love for my boy astounds me and this gospel never ceases to amaze me. This is definitely a trial of FAITH :)

1st email home from Sister Moon on Monday:
I just wanted to update you on Elder Nhem.  He went back in to the doctor today since he wasn't feeling any better. They gave him some tildroquinil and another medicine I must've spelled wrong because I haven't been able to find it on the internet. I will call and see if I can get it.  This is a stronger Amoeba medicine. I told him to stay in even if he started feeling better and try to eat little bits of our BRAT diet, bananas, rice , applesauce and toast. I think he was getting so hungry he ate a lot and then hurt a lot. He is drinking as much as he can also.
He will take these medications for 3-4 days and then we will see if they help. 
I am also in contact with our area doctor who is stationed in Hong Kong and is from Utah with what is happening. He has access to many doctors the church has in place if he doesn't know answers or needs help.
We are hoping this will kick it. Amoeba's are the hardest thing to get rid of that we have encountered here since I have been here. Luckily only a few have gotten them. They seem to take a long time to get under control. I will be continuing to monitor him and call him each day and he is to call me if there is any big change any time day or night.
Thanks for your encouragement for him.
 He is a strong man!!  

We surely love him and want him to be better!
Sis. Moon 
Then a second email from Sister Moon on Saturday:

Just an update.  I talked to Elder Nhem again on Friday. He said he felt like he was doing better.  The area doctor told me that the medicine is a real rough to take medicine - pretty intense and can make you feel sick just because you were taking it. I had expressed that to E. Nhem earlier and was hoping that may be why he had seemed to remain sick.
Saturday  I found out he had gone to the hospital in the night - this was from the APs , not quite sure why he didn't call me , but the APs knew. He had stayed there through the night and was back home when I called. He said the medicine had made him have a lot of acid in his stomach and that was what was hurting so much. They gave him some antacids and also some antibiotic.  I asked why they would've given him and antibiotic for acid. He kind of chuckled and said , " I forgot to tell you that I fell, ( I think on his bike) and my leg is infected." Oh my!  This poor Elder!  He just kind of chuckled again!  I asked about it and he said it was king of a deep puncture. So that is on the mend also, and we will need to keep a check on that also.  The doctor told him the amoeba's were gone now. I asked if that meant the little pockets of possible eggs from them also and he didn't know. That sometimes happens and sometimes doesn't. I have not checked with the area doctor about that , and will do that also to see if he thinks taking it as long as he did that it would take care of those also.  So he will stop taking that very intense medicine as of today, and take the antacids and antibiotics and I will keep checking on him.
As parents I know you think and wonder about it daily - at least I did, when my son was sick. I hope you feel free to contact me whenever you want to.  I am so hoping that this is the end for him - another week possibly for the acid and leg to get better.
We will do all we can here to help him. He has stayed in all week last week and rested.  

Please let me know if there is anything else you want to know that I can help you with.
Love, Sis. Moon
So this is where things were till tonite when we received an email from Penny.  He left about an hour ago to fly back to the mission home in Phnom Pehn.  He will be staying there with the Moon's until all this is figured out.  They have American doctors there for Americans in the embassy and such.  So we are ever optimistic that all be well soon. The Moon's are amazing people.  

A week of learning and humbling that is for sure.
Desire is good, faith is great, but when it's all said and done, God is the one in charge. He has a plan and no matter how hard we try, that plan is going to go according to His will. Yes I had the desire to go and proselyte, but Heavenly Father right now just has a different plan. I've been pretty sick this week, that is for sure. I have more amoebas and spent a night in the hospital actually. After treatment they couldn't find anything so they sent me with medicine and said come back. The problem hasn't gone away, it actually has intensified. So now I'm being flown into the city today to be closer to the Moons and to get better doctors that can speak English and hopefully figure this out. But this week has taught me some powerful lessons. Since I was inside all day everyday, I had a lot of time to study the scriptures and reflect on them. I slowly saw my desires and prayers change. I went from questioning Heavenly Father why this was happening and begging for a solution to asking Him to soften my heart to better understand His will. That is what true prayer is, bending our will to that of the Father's. It was humbling but now every prayer is ended with "Thy will be done." Because no matter what, in the end it's His will. Another powerful truth I've learned this week is about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I never fully understood it. I still don't but I'm starting to understand it a lot better. The Savior took on the pains and sins of the world. Literally every single pain. He knows exactly what I am going through and can help if I turn to Him. I can and will find comfort. He's experienced the little infected scrape on my foot, the bugs in my tummy, the left-over ulcers from those hungry bugs in my tummy, he knows my pains, my struggles over here. He knows me. He knows me better than I know myself. As we turn to Him in faith I promise we can and will receive comfort both emotionally and physically. He literally lifted the burden and pain off my back. Even through the struggles, little miracles still are happening. Yesterday at church, Khemra got confirmed a member. I already see the light of Christ working hard in his life. Because in the beginning he was a shy guy, and didn't even want to talk to me. He told me I'm American and that I should just go, but you know me (; Before he never smiled, and even covered his mouth when speaking. Now he is loud and proud. He is shining with the light of Christ. He smiles big and greets me from his wheelchair every time I see him with love and respect. Another amazing thing is this family I've been working really hard with, the one that lives an hour and a half away by bicycle, yeah.. are ready for baptism. The grandfather has been less-active and I never saw him at church. But as we continued to visit I saw him lighten up. He started trusting us and even started coming to church. It was hard to teach them because they are far far away, but seeing where they are now is all worth it. Yesterday after interviewing Abraham, Maria, and Sokhuan, my district leader assuredly told me they are ready. Here is what is the coolest, the grandfather, Ohm Hai, or Lehi as I like to call him, is baptizing the grandkids!! It is just another little miracle the Lord has thrown my way is this time of trial. So yeah life's a little hard right now. But when is it not? I am loving every minute of it. I mean I get to fly on an airplane this morning. That's cool right? (: So yeah, I'll keep going strong and am happy as ever, don't worry about me! Have a great week and I love you all for the support!

Elder Spencer Nhem

I am so incredibly proud of Elder Nhem. 
 Through it all he never gives up. 
 Remember him in your prayers please.  
His health is just a huge struggle.
His example brings me much peace and comfort.  
The things we learn from our children.

On a side note: 
Tonite we had 4 sister missionaries over to dinner.  Sister Noun leaves in the morning to return home to Phnom Pehn.  Sister Loy just arrived two months ago from Siem Reip.  I have enclosed pictures.  Sister Loy's father is Spencer's branch president.  He sent a picture of her little sister tonite.  So we took a picture of his sisters with Sister Loy.  What a small world:)  He spent his Sunday with her family and we spent ours with her thousands of miles away.  Only in the gospel does such amazing things happen to strengthen our testimonies.
    Sister Loy's little sister and Elder Nhem
(After dinner I showed her the picture and asked her if she knew who this was? 
 She started to laugh and said "Yes that's my little sister")

 Rachel, Sister Loy and Eliza
Rachel, Sister Dunster , Sister Loy, Sister Noun, Sister Walker and Eliza

Have a great week everyone and Happy Independence Day!
Love to you all!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Week 32: I'm finally back in action... kinda of ?

Well Elder Nhem spent last night in the hospital and had a little morphine :) We are hopefully optimistic it was just another bump in the road.  This time it was his kidneys.  
We're not sure if it is related to the parasites.  

I have a new favorite picture.  He is doing amazing things!

Hey everyone,

Sorry it's been a couple of weeks since hearing from me. I've been dealing with some health issues that have put me out of commission for a bit. After several trips to the hospital and lots of hours of patience and faith I hope it'll all be soon over.

The country is still hot as ever, rain or shine, night or day, always blazing. Every single day I have gotten completely soaked! Like I come from Washington, the rainiest state ever and I still get shivers down my spine when it monsoons here. It's kinda nice sometimes though because it's like a refreshing shower. Seriously in like .25 seconds I'm soaked head to toe, gosh it blows my mind! And the rain is soaking all the fields so I have a feeling I'm going to be picking lots of rice soon for service... Yay for Asia's main food staple! (:

But that is okay, over the past couple weeks my relationship with my Savior and my Heavenly Father has grown in ways I never imagined. I truly learned to lean on my Savior. He has experienced my pains and can ease them for me. He understands exactly what I'm going through and knows exactly what I need to find comfort. His presence in my life has never been more real. I'm starting to see this whole mission is just preparing me for the rest of my life.
As for the area, wow! It has just been such a blur! Time is flying and Elder Stanley and I are trying to work our tails off. With the health issues we've been held back, but only a little. Yesterday I had the lovely privilege to baptize a young man with faith the likes I've never seen before. Khemra is the young man who cannot walk. He pedals a bike contraption with his hands 2 hours every Sunday to get to church. But man is it worth it. Seeing him in those white clothes all excited to get into the baptismal font was such a special experience. The actual baptism was so bizarre but it's okay :P After I said the prayer he sort of just went down and to everyone watching he didn't come back out! He had crawled through the water over to the side so fast like wow it was crazy! Don't worry the witnesses said he went all the way under but it was strange nonetheless. But afterwords is what stuck out to me the most. After he was baptized we were sitting side by side and he whispers to me "Thank you Elder Nhem, I have never been so happy before in my life. I just feel like crying" and with tears in both our eyes I put my arm around the guy and told him how proud I am of him and told him how much his Savior loves him. This Gospel really does change lives. It sets people free and gives hope and it's such an amazing privilege to get to be here doing this work! I will keep going strong regardless of the little bugs in my stomach. My grandpa told me something funny, he said the bugs are just Satan working hard and probably have little red horns and tipped tails so that's why it hurts so bad! :D Gosh he is so silly, but it's true, the little buggers hurt! But anyways, I'm well! I'm working harder than ever and just enduring! I know the Lord will reward me for my patience and endurance so it's all worth it!
I love you all and have a great week! In Khmer they say "Som sleh trum nung sen, som tuasna piak bendah" Which means, to be continued, please wait until next episode (;
Elder Spencer Paul Nhem

 Loved this quote from President Uchtdorf

Saturday, June 21, 2014


Dearest Family & Friends,

This has been a turning point for Elder Phnom Penny.  Your fasting and prayers is much appreciated.  His continued health issues sent him back to the hospital/clinic I'm not really sure how he's being treated or with what medicine.  It truly is a mission of FAITH! I due know from a quick email from President Moon he is in bed and unable to proselyte, but did attend a zone conference.  Really no contact with Penny.  Then last night at 20:45 a quick email. "See ya in 17 months, love ya'all ;)"
YES he did put a winky face so your guess is as good as mine that he is doing better.  I think he was genuinely concerned he might have to come home.  His testimony is stronger than ever. Here is part of an email home last P day.

"When I was feeling more down then I ever could I did the only thing I could. I prayed. I prayed for a long time. And I realized and found something I've been searching for, for the past 19 years. I've been waiting all my life for what happened. I had a very personal and real witness of my Heavenly Father's presence. I've never felt more alone in my life than at the beginning of last week. When I prayed, I  wanted to know why I was alone when I was trying my hardest for Him. What followed next will never leave my memory. I felt Him. I felt His presence and love in a way I've been looking for all my life. I heard Him say, "I'm here." That is a moment I'll remember for the rest of my existence really. Before I believed, but now I know. He is there. He lives and He loves me." 

Looking forward to tomorrow evening.  Thank you for your continued love and support of my sweet missionary and my family.

Love to you all!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

WEEK 30: A tough week in good ole Cambodia

Elder Nhem's health continues to give him trouble.
  It was a physically and emotionally challenging week.
No blog message today he did not have time. 
 Remember him in your prayers :)

He did send pictures.

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Week 29: A Week of Tremendous FAITH and TRUST

Every week it blows my mind how the Lord plays a helping hand in this work. This week was just tremendous..
It started pretty normal, Elder Mok and I just kicking trash out here doing work. They have a Khmer saying over here about like budhist death rituals and one life which is similar to the American saying or "YOLO" or "You Only Live Once".... We may or may not use that saying as our motto (; hahahaha! But anyways, sooooooooooooo busy I hardly have time to catch my breath. We leave the house and literally work from morning until dark going every which way and wow is it exhausting! This week we taught tons of lessons, and contacted over 100 people once again! Just trying to share the Gospel as much as we can. This week as we went to teach Bong Lian's family wow they continue to amaze! We went and taught them this week and the kids were asking about questions all over the Book of Mormon and they we just so smart and receptive. They all come to everything and Satan is working hard on them, but their faith is so much stronger. It is an inspiration to teach them and their baptism here in the next couple of weeks will be so sweet. As for faith, I have two other investigators that leave my jaw dropped every time I see them. To begin with, my area is the biggest and farthest from the church. These two investigators cannot walk. One doesn't even have legs but they still make the journey to church without fail. The young man, Khamra, pedals a bike contraption for 2 hours every Sunday to get to church by 9 o' clock. That is a miracle. He comes every week without fail and soaks up everything about the Gospel. I've never seen a faith stronger than his. When him and Kanya get baptized here in the next couple weeks too, man I just can't wait! On Sunday I got to baptize a neak ming and man was that a sweet experience to say the baptismal prayer in Khmer was quite a thriller (: Just everything up here is going so fast and now the transfer is already over. Elder Mok is going to Battambong to be a Zone Leader so now Elder Stanley is coming up to Siem Riep to my companion as the Zone Leader up here. It is all so exciting but now we only have 2 companionships up here so my already busy life just got a lot more busier. But I love it. I don't have time to do anything but serve.. and that my friends, is an amazing blessing. The love I have for the Cambodian people at this point is beyond word description. The only way I can truly show it and express it and undivided attention and work sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with them. It's hard and tiring don't get me wrong but I honestly have the support of God, so I can't complain. Yeah my area is huge and I ride my bike for hours everyday and it's hot, so what! I'm doing the Lord's work and man do I look nice and fit these days :P Hahah in all seriousness though, this is such a blessing for my life. And not only my life but the lives of my loved ones back home. I know Heavenly Father is watching over them and blessing them as a result of this service and it makes it all the bit more worth it. I'm so extremely grateful to be up here in Siem Riep doing what I can do best. Share the Gospel. And wow am I happy to be doing it! 
From your favorite missionary with much love,
Elder Spencer Paul Nhem
And the snakes and scorpions I saw during service this week.. let's just say prayers are welcome (:

Monday, May 26, 2014

Week 28: I may not be able to play Temple Run...but I can live it!


So this week started with a journey to Angkor Watt and the surrounding temples and ruins and let me tell you, they call it a wonder of the world for a reason. It seriously was like a movie crawling and climbing around in ancient ruins in the middle of the Cambodian jungle. There really just isn't anything else like it in this world. I'm so grateful for the area I'm in and the blessings I've received since coming up to Siem Riep.

But okay for this week's experiences, before I say anything else, let's just say, riding my bike at night under the light of lightning on my right side and a million stars on my left side is quite the experience. I love coming home after a night lesson and experiencing that. It's weird seeing 4 or 5 different lightning storms all going on at once, it's also pretty dang cool (: But yeah this week Elder Cannon and Elder Mok had to go up to Phnom Penh for the establishing of stakes here in Cambodia so lots of exchanges and splits with other Elders and branch missionaries. Soooooo busy lately it's hard to even catch my breathe! I go from one appointment to another and bike soooooo far everyday seriously my calves are like steel! :P But all the hard work is paying off for sure! This week I had my first baptism in the area with Bong Ohk who is the coolest Cambodia I've met! He is the most humble and loving and funny guy ever! His smile is killer and seeing that smile as he came out of the baptismal font is something I'll remember forever! He seriously is so prepared and I can't wait for him to get the priesthood, and then more good news we have a whole family getting baptized this next week! They are sort of a miracle in themselves just finding them. I was on an exchange with Elder Caine and we were riding down the road and I saw a dirt path leading into the middle of nowhere. I felt like we needed to go down that path so I told Elder Caine and probably thinking I'm crazy we went. After 5 minutes of seeing no one or any houses he insisted maybe we go back but I'm stubborn and said let's keep going. We find this house in the middle of the country a little ways off and find the most amazing family and they love the Gospel. Now next week I will witness all of them be born of God (: Miracles. Seriously seeing miracles up here in Siem Riep. And we have tons of other people we are teaching too and I just don't know how to express how amazing an experience this is! (: But there is some difficulty going on too. Satan is trying everything in his power to stop us from doing this work. Breaking bikes, sending people our way cursing us out nad chasing us, scary monkeys with teeth as long as my finger, and even sending ghosts our way. Elder Mok and I have been seeing some intense things here in the deep jungle. But that's okay, because for one, I have the Lord on my side and He's all powerful, and two, it's pretty awesome someday I'll tell my kids, "I did so much good work on my mission Satan had ghosts chasing me around" :P It's all good. I'm too happy to care about all of that. I love this work, I love this mission. I love Cambodia. I love my Savior and my Heavenly Father. I love my dear family and Mykhala and all their support and I'm going to keep going strong over here in Cambodia. Always.

Elder Spencer Nhem

Happy Memorial Day everyone.  All is well in Cambodia.  Elder Phnom Penny is working harder than ever.  Have a great week!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Week 27 Working Harder than Ever

"Be Ye Doers of the Word"

Okay well it's going to be a short email this week because very soon I'm headed to Angkor Wat for the day to see a wonder of the world (:

But anyways so yeah this week and last week I'd say have been full of miracles and some of the best weeks of my mission. Elder Mok and I are on fire! We are really amping up the stakes and giving it 200% We have started contacting over 100 people a week and started teaching over 20 new people! We have a bunch of baptisms coming up now and wow the Lord is really helping us! So many crazy situations where you can't deny that God is helping us every step of the way. And as the work is getting crazier so is everything around us. It is hotter than ever and then boom like a monsoon and crazy hard wind and it feels like I'm in "The Other Side of Heaven":P But when it's all said and done, it's some of the best experiences of my life. I'm sort of just getting lost up here in Siem Riep, never been busier but I love it all so much. That says a lot because if you know me well, I don't like work. But this work is important and crucial to the people of Cambodia. To the people I love. So I will continue serving them with all my heart, might, mind, and strength. Have a great week! Your favorite happy missionary,

Elder Nhem
Oh and I saw a spider bigger than my hand this week right next to my hand... yeah.