Thursday, December 4, 2014

Happy December - December 1, 2014


 
We went to see Okada shimai and Toma kun every day this week. Today,
Nakajima shimai brought love, her dog. Cute name, right? Toma kun
loved feeding the dog bread. 
So as a Tokyo mission, we do what we call Facebook waves every Monday with hashtags and stuff. I would encourage you to make your own hashtag based off mine and get it started going viral. Also, a really simple way that you can share the gospel and help the missionaries is by sharing or liking our stuff. It goes a long ways. Today I have been thinking a lot about what my mission is teaching me. Here is one of them.
Oh, a random thing. If you look in the General Conference address and find, lord is it I, the talk from President Uchdorf, you will find a picture of a Japanese man. His name is Imamura kyoudai and he is a member of the Koga ward!! Since it was Pday we had some fun times with Nakajima shimai. I love her soooooo incredibly much. I want to be like her when I grow up. She always makes everyone feel so special and does a wonderful job of hastening the Lords work.
November 25 Love rainy days. They happen pretty much every week in Japan. You have to know you are in Japan when it starts raining a little bit and then two seconds later it is pouring. I love the rain. Like I've said before, any weather is wonderful for me. We met with Hiroko finally!! She is this cute lady who has lived in America. Has two children. On this visit, we only got to meet one of them. We are going to do our family eikaiwa program with them. The family eikaiwa program is half English class, half gospel discussion. It is way fun. We give them 12 times to do it and then after that, they either have to be done,or have more interest in the gospel than they do in taking English lessons. However, today when we visited, we pretty much just talked about the gospel. She shares a lot of the same beliefs. I think in relation to how much doctrine we taught, it had to have been about half of the missionary discussions! It was amazing. A lot of people don't realize that Christians really hold their ancestors as important. Such a great time to talk about family history. Hiroko sans daughter's birthday is next Monday, so we are going to do a birthday party with them and share a message with them about the gospel. We went to visit Hoshida Akiko san today. She asked us all sorts of questions that I have never really been asked on my mission, but that were really good for me to hear. She asked why we would go from door to door. She has things she believes in too, but she wouldn't just go telling people about it. It's a great question. I guess the answer lies in Elder Bednar's talk. "When we invite you to attend church with us or to learn with the full-time missionaries, we are not trying to sell you a product. As members of the Church, we do not receive prizes or bonus points in a heavenly contest. We are not seeking simply to increase the numerical size of the Church. And most importantly, we are not attempting to coerce you to believe as we do. We are inviting you to hear the restored truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ so you can study, ponder, pray, and come to know for yourself if the things we are sharing with you are true." I know of the role this message has played in my life and, as a result, have a natural instinct to share it with other people. You know how Elder Bednar also talked about that story where the little boy got healed and so he wanted to share it with everyone. I have noticed the exact same pattern with Nakajima shimai and, just like Elder Bednar, it amazes me beyond anything else. She has literally become a super star hero in my life. She always carries with her church flyers, pamphlets, and book of Mormons around with her to give to people that she has ever even met before. One day this week we were with her and we ran into a lady that she had apparently seen twice that day and that was a sign, so she literally ran to chase her down to give her a flyer and tell her to try and come to church. It bewilders me every single day. If every member was like her in our church, everyone in the world would be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. November 26 Able to met with Ueda Shimai. She has been running through my mind like crazy this past week. She lives alone, but I have learned two things from her recently. 1. Do it and be happy. Dont do it, and be sad. 2. You can't do it alone. No further explanation on that one. This is Hasegawa san. I've told you about her before. She is such a hoot.
We are working with her little by little. For being a grandma, she sure is gone from her house a lot. Her mother, who is 97 is in the hospital and she has to take care of her a lot. She really has a sincere desire to be a good person and I love that about her. Then there is Mari chan.
She is sooo adorable and she doesn't even believe she is. She is super nice. She has lots of trials in her life. She loves us visiting her and helping here feel good. We went to eikaiwa and took fun pics. She loves taking pictures with me for some reason ;) November 27 Happy Thanksgiving. Today we had our district meeting in Oyama and then we went to the Adachi family for thanksgiving dinner. They are adorable. They made all the food for the missionaries in our zone. At the start of the dinner, they said, okay it's thanksgiving and we are thankful for missionaries. So cute, right?! I love members who love us. Love sure does go a long ways.
We visited the Nakamura family. It was so cute, they came to the door and then said just a minute. And then a few minutes later Ayumi chan popped out of the door and we were so happy to see her. Oh, do I love that girl. They welcomed us right in and we talked about the importance of Christmas. I don't know if you have seen it yet, but if you haven't, look up "he is the gift" in YouTube or lds.org. It is this wonderful Christmas initiative that our church is doing this Christmas. Wonderful way to tell your friends the true meaning of Christmas. I love showing this video to as many people as I possibly can. It never gets old. November 28 Got to meet with Mari san. Nakajima shimai got new furniture from the seki family and so she moved her old table out into her "garage" and served us our there while we did a lesson. It was so cute because after the lesson she was talking about how her little place has become like a little restaurant. And she said she loves it. :) Today for language study, I talked with one of our recent converts about how many kanji we can make using one type of stroke. I love Japanese because there is so much meaning behind every single work. I love Japanese!
November 29 I'm pretty sure I didn't breathe today. Today was exchanges with Howe Shimai. She is one of the most incredible persons I have ever met in my whole life. I am so thankful for her influence in my life. She is a pretty new missionary and so her Japanese is very simple, but I was astounded by the power of her testimony when she bore it. I know that The Lord works through us missionaries because we are the weak things of the world. It was the day before the baptism, so getting that prepared along with all our other appointments was just crazy. Here is Saki chan.
November 30 Today I am so thankful to my loving Heavenly Father and Savior today. I worked my tail of this week. Like literally, I had no breathing time. It was sweet! Okada shimai was able to be baptized. She said she felt a fushigi feeling. Hope she knows that is the spirit. She seems to really be sensitive to the spirit she just doesn't show a lot of emotions ever.
I felt like there was so many things going on during the baptismal service that it was hard to focus, but here are the feelings I felt 1. When Okada shimai got baptized, toma kun wanted to go in with him. How important it will be for her to raise her son in this gospel so that he too can be baptized when he is 8 2. I felt a special spirit when I got to sing with the young women I like to look for rainbows to Okada shimai. What a wonderful thing it is to have a new start. 3. I really felt Nakajima Shimai's love for Okada shimai when she did her shokai. Nakajima shimai has been one of Okada Shimai's best friends. It wis incredible to see the change in both of them. Thy are just like family. When I think of them, I remember what it means to be a true friend. 4. I felt the spirit when Kurosaki shimai read the scripture in 2 Nephi 31:19-20 that this isn't the end, just the very beginning. 5. I felt the spirit when I got to lead the music and look into the faces of people that I love while singing I am a Child of God. Ueda Shimai called us this morning and said that she couldn't come to church because one of her friends and fallen over the night before and had to go to the hospital. She said she was sorry. I told her not to tell me, but to tell god. Told her to say a prayer right now and ask god what she should do. But I told her I would be waiting for her at the church. She ended up coming. Every single one of the recent converts came as well as four investigators. Oh, man. Let me tell you the joy I felt. It can't be described. Every day is a special day, it's the day we get ready for Sunday. I love it when investigators come to church. After all, 100% of people who get baptized have been to church, right?! :) We blew the soe out of the water this week. It was so the best. In my opinion, that is a minimum. I don't settle for less. I know that The Lord is at the head of this work. We don't do anything. It is all Him. I, like Alma, rejoice in His glory. December 1 Keep the commandments...it's all you have to do in life. I am amazed that when people go down hill, almost every time it is because they aren't keeping commandments. God has given us so much, and he only asks us one thing. I think we can do it. Fun with Hiroko sans daughter, miku. I made yakisoba for 8 of us. There was so much. I love coming. Wonderful lesson about the plan of salvation. They loved it. December 2 Today was my last temple Pday.
Talk about bittersweet. I love the temple so much. When we started, a man told us that this would be one of the deepest learning experiences for us today. I learned a lot about my life in the temple today. It was one of the most spiritual experiences I have ever had. I learned that another season of life will soon end. But if I stayed in that season forever, I would never learn and grow to become the person that God wants me to be. Love you all!! Sister Yamauchi

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