Monday, November 4, 2013

Blessings from Heaven - November 4, 2013

 I am soooooooooooo incredibly grateful for my new Japanese companion-Sister Suita!! Of the 36 new missionaries that entered the field this week, there were only two Nihonjin sisters. I'm one lucky duck.
 The MTC name badges are different from the name badges we can order out in the field. In the MTC, the default alphabet for the name badge is Katakana. But, of course, since my name is Japanese, I wanted Kanji. It took a little longer than expected, but it finally came this week!! Hurray.

 BaBaBaBaBa, I'm lovin' it!

My First Experience with the Japanese version of McDonalds (which I think is better than the American McDonalds)‏

I can hardly believe that it's already November! Wowza. As everyone knows (or I guess at least Americans know) November is a special time to express our thanks.This week, I have been increasingly aware of the fact that my Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, know me personally. They knows my desires, my hopes, my dreams, my fears, my everything. They are truly my best friends and I will be forever in debt to them. I have felt their love in a very real way this week and am so very thankful for that. Here are some of the specific things I am grateful for this week.
  1. I am soooooooooooo incredibly grateful for my new Japanese companion-Sister Suita!! Of the 36 new missionaries that entered the field this week, there were only two Nihonjin sisters. I'm one lucky duck. She is my little angel and I am so thankful for the opportunity I have to train a new missionary. My trainee (Sister Suita) is kind of like my investigators. I've got to put all my focus on them. She is the most important person and I'm second to her. One of my missions right now is Sister Suita. Everything that I do will impact her entire mission, and I want to help her be the best missionary EVER. Here's a fun little jilkoshokai (introduction) of Sister Suita. Sister Suita hails from Nara, which is next to Kyoto. She is in the Osaka stake and her Dad is the Stake President in Osaka right now. We have a lot of similarities. She has 7 people in her family and loves volleyball. She went to Hawaii for a little while before coming on a mission and knows a little bit of English. She wants to know more English and I want to know more Japanese, so we are teaching each other. She loves missionary work. When we had our first companion study, I asked the question, "Do you know what we're going to do?" I think said, "Well, my friend, we're going to hit the pavement. We're going to find, we're going to teach, and we're going to baptize!" I am looking forward to working with her this transfer!!
  2. Every night, our district leader calls us. While talking to him and telling him about the lessons we had that day, I forgot the English words for "son" and "sacrament meeting." A.k.a. I could only say them in Japanese. This might seem like a really weird thing to be thankful for, but I am thankful that I am losing my English skills (or at least I hope that is what's happening). I have truly witnessed the miracle of the gift of tongues. I think most people, when they think the gift of tongues, think of just being able to all of a sudden speak a new language. It is so much more than that. It requires a great deal of effort on our part and then lots of faith. I have also come to find that the gift of tongues doesn't always mean speaking the language perfectly. During lessons, I am ever aware of the fact that I don't know as much Japanese as I wish I did. However, I think that part of the gift of tongues is when, during the lessons, your investigator can understand you and you can understand your investigator despite the differences.
  3. We have a new progressing investigator!! Her name is Sato Yukari. She is 25 years old and is the cutest! I am so thankful for her willingness to meet with us and learn about our church. Yesterday, she came to all 3 hours of church. AMAZING!! We were also able to eat dinner with a couple member families Sunday night so that she can have church friends.
  4. This week, I got dendoed to from another church volunteer. She says she thinks the Book of Mormon is a deception and invited me to pray about it again to really know if it's true. I told her I would do it. As I followed the steps in Moroni's promise during personal study, I just felt a nice, warm feeling. It didn't need to be something big, but just enough to reassure me that it was true (the Lord shouldn't have to use a flood light when a flashlight is sufficient). How can this book not be true? I am so thankful that my Heavenly Father gave me another chance to strengthen my own testimony of this marvelous book. At a Southern Baptist Church in America, there is a billboard outside the church that says, "Don't pray about the book of Mormon. That's how they get you." This is powerful evidence of the truth of Moroni's promise. It works. It's not called Moroni's "promise" for nothing.
I'm so excited for another week as a missionary. What a wonderful season of life it is. All day, every day, having the opportunity to focus on helping others draw closer to Christ. As taught in D&C 138:56, every person on this earth was taught the "first lessons in the world of spirits and were prepared to come forth in the due time of the Lord..." All we have to do is help them REMEMBER!

Thanks for all your hard work as we continue to hasten the work of salvation!! Love you all!

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