Monday, December 1, 2014

"Won't you come to the public bath with us?" Noo thank you, wrinkled old lady.

Hello hello!
No big events this week; just small miracles from Heavenly Father spattered throughout our days as we work to be exactly obedient in every measure and give dendou our alll. I'm glad to be with Yama shimai- we're equally yoked and we teach well together. I learned that as we taught a handful of first lessons at doorways this week! The Lord softened the hearts of many we talked to; and we found many people with interest in learning about God. These are the things that make a missionary the happiest! Hallelujah!

At the church!
  Early in the week, coming off of a blow of not-so-good health and feeling terrible about the miscommunication with someone the week before (see the previous blog post), I was feeling pretty spiritually down. Some times on my mission, I've wondered, "when I'm trying so hard to be good and when I need the Lord's guidance more than ever; why is it not coming? Why can't I feel it?"  There are several reasons. But after a bout of feeling this in a very strong wave, I did turn to Heavenly Father for help, asking me to just give me a witness that He's there and that He loves me. And as I turned away from pitying myself in my pretended-ignored state, I turned to my scriptures. and I received a stronger witness than I probably have in my whole life that the Book of Mormon is true, God is my Heavenly Father, and Jesus is the Christ. I opened up to Ether 3, where the brother of Jared is conversing with the Lord, and because of the strength of his faith, he sees the hand of God. Then the conversation before Christ reveals his body to the brother of Jared was what I read- and the Lord asks Him certain questions before He shows himself that touched my heart, and called me to a recollection that the miracle comes AFTER the trial of our faith. At that moment, I felt in my heart, that I KNOW the Book of Mormon is true. I don't think it's true; I don't hope it's true; I know for a fact that a man with little education could not have written a book that has aided me and brought me closer to God as has no other book has- in under 30 days. I know the prophets that warned the people of ancient America to turn to Christ were speaking to our day as well- and as we heed to the words of ancient and modern-day prophets, we will draw closer to God, and gain happiness and a perfect sense of direction in this love. I love the Book of Mormon.
   The Lord blessed us as we went out to dendo in the cold this week. We met 4 people who wanted to come to church, wanted to know who God was, wanted to read the Book of Mormon, wanted to try praying, wanted us to come back....We felt so blessed. Truly perfect obedience does bring blessings. A line that went through my head many times this week is, "Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of Heaven", from Praise to the Man. Well...it's true!

Yama and I, in between dendo of course
The Word of the Week is one that my companion used the other day- may I just say that DANG she uses hard Japanese. And Kansai-ben. Like seriously; I thought I knew Japanese before becoming companions with her...now I'm just like, "What??" But ANYWAY! It is:Chokkan!! It means Intuition! Like women's intuition, etc.. I'm probably just teaching you this word because I want you to understand that Arashiyama shimai uses some stinking HIGH-CALIBER JAPANESE.
We had a hilarious, 90% (I'm not exaggerating. Seriously.) Spanish lesson with Maria this week with Pide as a joint on Skype! We think from here on out, we're going to try and teach her without a Spanish speaking joint; because if there is ONE PERSON in the room that understands her Spanish, she just takes off and there's no catching her. But it was a good lesson! We hope that as she continues to read the BoM that she will see that it is truth to be used along the Bible to know what God wants us to do! She's seriously the cutest, though; we love her tons!
If you want a little Spiritual Boost, here's some of mine from the week! In the morning when I study my scriptures, if a scripture really stands out to me or touches my heart, I write it at the top of my planner on that day's page, and kind of try to make it my theme for the day! I really like it, it keeps the spirit in my heart!
D&C 30:42- Fear not, little children...
Mormon 9:27- O then despise not, and wonder not....doubt not, but be believing
Check them out, I love both of them!

My study corner!!
And that's about it for this week! OH! Two kind of crazy happenings:
We went to a faraway place called Nakoso to volunteer at an old folks' lunch, and they all go to the hot bath together during the luncheon. The lady next to me turned to me and said, "won't you join us?" I politely declined. I look across the table, and one of the sassier, heavier ladies is asking Shwartz choro one of the Elders the same question.....his face? PRICELESS.
Last night we went tracting, and the first door we knocked on was a man who let us into his (VERY nice) home, where his wife was sitting with the TV going, staring blankly out the window. After talking to this man for a few minutes we realized that this man's wife is Ono Emiko san- THE Emiko san- a.k.a. the best Hula dancer that Japan has ever had. There's a movie called "Hula girls", which is a true story of her life. The sad thing is? 8 years ago she was diagnosed with dementia, and now she does not talk-and her husband is caring for her by himself (she's 70 and he's 73). It was sad to see. They had me show her the hula I learned from my former Hawaiian companion, her husband was very impressed and she continued her blank stare. He was really nice, and wants to talk to us more (because he's lonely AND because he wants to know who God is and where he goes when he/his wife dies) Well...we were blessed to house into this man (who knew a shockingly large amount about Mormons- thanks to the Polynesian Cultural center in Hawaii).
  
The biggest Sunday you have ever seen - it could have fed 20, but we somehow managed with 9 people (including this Elder, of course)
Love you!
Orgill shimai

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