Sister MacArthur and Sister Yamauchi
We just finished zone pday in a super beautiful park next to Shibuya. We had a good time. Played some basketball, took some pictures, saw lots of gaijin (foreigners). Can I just tell you how weird it is to see American people anymore.
Konbanwa from Nihon!!
Wasn't conference the best ever?! My favorite talk...ALL OF THEM!! But seriously, wow, what a revelation packed weekend). I decided I should probably follow up with everyone on this commitment made by Elder Ballard, "To help you in this process, I invite all members, regardless of your current calling or level of activity in the Church, to obtain a copy of Preach My Gospel. It is available through our distribution centers and also online. The online version can be read or downloaded at no cost. It is a guidebook for missionary work--which means it is a guidebook for all of us. Read it, study it, and then apply what you learn to help you understand how to bring souls to Christ through invitation and follow-up. As President Thomas S. Monson has said, “Now is the time for members and missionaries to come together, to work together, to labor in the Lord’s vineyard to bring souls unto Him.” I hope you are reading it.
We also had transfer calls this morning. After staying in Kasukabe for 7 months of my mission, you could probably say that I really didn't have any doubt that I was staying here in Senzokuike. Sister MacArthur is too. This transfer has been a wonderful one. On Kasukabe, me and Sister Lowry opened up a new area. Senzokuike wasn't a new area, but we did whitewash, meaning that both of us are new to the area. At the start of this transfer, we had no investigators at all, but that had changed dramatically with the Lord's help. There are sooooo many prepared people it's incredible. Let me take you through just a few of the thousands of miracles in our week.
I am so grateful for every second that I have to serve The Lord. Every single second, after all, we only have four minutes, right? Oh how I enjoyed conference and the message it brought to the hearts of everyone, individually. One of our investigators said that the words really entered her heart. Cool miracle, right?! I know that we are led by living prophets and apostles today. We had a general conference miracle weekend. Two of our investigators brought friends with them to watch. It helped me realize that it's not just the missionaries and the members that can bring friends to church, but our investigators as well! Saoshin san is an investigator that we met through Japanese class. She is an angel. She is so willing to listen to our message and wants to come to church and improve. Her mom is really sick right now, so your prayers would be greatly appreciated. Please also pray for Saoshin san to be able to receive baptism along with her friend Oo san.
Usually as sister training leader, I go on about one exchange per week. This week I went on two exchanges. One of the exchanges is what I call the Kagi (key) story. It was nearing the end of the day and we were about to go visit a less active by bike. I always keep my bike key in the same place. However, this particular day, it wasn't in my bag pocket. I had no idea where it could be. We searched for a little bit, prayed, and even tried unpicking the bike with a bobby pin. Nothing was working, so we decided to go finding near our apartment and the first person that we talked to was a Jehovah Witness. She isn't very strong in her faith right now and would love to talk about our church. We ended up setting an appointment for this Sunday. Then, about 10 minutes later, we ran into another lady who said that she would love to meet when she has time. The last lady we ran into actually lives close to the Shibuya Sisters' apartment! Her family comes from a Christian background, but she doesn't have a religion right now. She is pregnant and we told her our message could help her raise her child. She will be meeting with the Shibuya Sisters' soon. When we got back into the apartment for the night, I knew where my key was. It was incredible! We did what The Lord needed us to and then He answered my prayer. This is the Lords work! We go where HE wants us to go. We say what HE wants us to go. We be what HE wants us to be.
One more huge miracle that I'm so excited to share! We have a member in our ward with ten kids. She is what I define as a truly devoted daughter of God. Some of her children are less active, but she remains strong and loves helping the missionaries. Her son is 10 years old, but has not received baptism yet. Her son is less active, but her grandson, Riyuya kun, has started coming to church a little bit. During the lesson, it just hit me really hard how wonderful the teaching situation was-when you have a member who cares more than anything about the investigator, her grandson. We set a baptismal date on the first lesson and he just kept saying that he wants to get baptized so badly after the lesson. Please pray for him to be baptized. Then, during the Saturday session of General Conference, we learned that Elder Scott had the same type of situation-a grandmother who cared enough to ensure that he got baptized. I wouldn't be surprised if Riyuya kun turned out to be a wonderful leader like him someday.
I love this poem:
My father rules the Heavens,
My mother is a Queen,
My brother is a Champion they call the King of Kings,
I am born of Royal Birth, it courses through my veins,
What will I be called, the story still remains.
We are all children of a Heavenly Father and all have some seriously extreme potential. Let me end with a favorite quote. "Dear friends, you are in the midst of an exhilarating journey. In some ways, you are racing down the half-pipe or sled track, and it can be challenging to perform each element or navigate each turn along the way. But remember, you’ve prepared for this for millennia. This is your moment to perform. This is your four minutes! The time is now!" I don't know about you, but I plan on spending all four of my minutes serving the God that gave me life.
Hugs and loves to all of God's precious children,