Happy December! I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving; we ate delicious IndoCurry with the chorotachi elders and some of their investigators to "celebrate".
So I was talking to Kirby Shimai and I asked, "why is it that I've gained NO WEIGHT in Japan and yet my face looks so fat??" She turned to me and said, "Uh, you have rice cheeks." Ahem I have WHAT. So apparently when gaijin switch their diet to their main carb being just straight white rice, the fat cells particularly in the cheeks start getting used. Soooo I'm not gaining any weight and yet I'm the newest recruited member for Alvin and the chipmunks?!!! Someone PLEASE snopes this for me right quick. But either way; I have given up rice. I DON'T EVEN LIKE IT ANYWAY. So slightly bitter that I hadn't known about that. ANYWAY.
So aside from my vanity ranting, this week was really great. I learned that when a door shuts, the Lord opens a window of opportunity! My bestie the less-active K-shimai forgot about our appointment, so we had an open hour and decided to visit M-shimai. She had a friend over and we sang Christmas hymns for them and were able to have a lesson with her friend Miura-san about Christ! It was such a blessing! Member joint lessons are so much more powerful. It's just like having a normal person who's like "Hey, I'm your friend and I'm normal and I know these things are true as well!" There is a power in members that missionaries cannot have just relying on ourselves.
SO on the dramatic side, we had a missionary in our district just kind of "had a lot on their mind" and just slipped out during language study and ran to the eki train station and was gone all day...their companion found them that night just sitting on a bench. SO not only a day that we searched for them, but also it was a really natural finding opportunity! "Have you seen a missionary with this badge just by themselves?" But anyway they're safe and sound now. It was just...strange. You don't just leave...odd.
This week I really discovered the power of fasting and prayer. I truly want to find a new kyudosha investigator every week. This transfer we haven't found one. So I fasted and prayed fervently that through our faith and hard work, that someone would be put in our path that would receive our message. On Sunday as I was still fasting, we were housing. It was time to head back and eat dinner, and Takatsuka shimai turned to me and said "Should we head back or house another half an hour?" I thought for a moment. If the Lord was going to bless us with someone who would listen, I knew were gonna have to show our faith. "Let's just finish this row," I said. Two doors later we met Chieko san. She has cancer and is currently doing chemo and subsequently has no hair. She's prayed to God before when her cancer was really bad to spare her life; and He did. She wonders about where we go after this life and what role God has in it. We asked if we could visit next week. She immediately said, "Sure! I'm kind of busy with chemotherapy but anytime I'm not at the hospital should be fine!" She readily gave us her number and we're meeting her this week. I know the Lord answered my prayers and that through faith, that we can find those who will receive us.
We've had a lot of fun recently using our talents and singing Christmas songs for members! They love it and Y-shimai is having me teach her how to play the ukulele! After I played it for her, she asked me if I would teach her and then went out and bought one! So fun. What an amazing ward to be in.
I love life, I'm a third of the way done with my mission, and next email I'll know who my new companion is! Keep it classy, keep it real.