MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!!!!! What a wonderful time of the year- the BEST time of the year in fact! Okay so a ton of amazing things happened this week. It was such a great week to be a missionary in Matsuyama :)
First off, last monday was Bowman Shimai`s birthday party. What a fun way to involve the members, our friends, and investigators! It was so much fun and was a huge success. Everyone had a blast. Sometimes you just have to plan parties and things to involve everyone and show them how we are all allowed to have fun too! This gospel is a gospel of JOY! We must never forget that.
We had a few lessons with recent converts this past week which was awesome. I love recent converts because they are just so dang cute. They are still so excited and eager to learn about the gospel. It makes me so happy and strengthens my testimony every time we meet with them.
We had a lesson with the cutest member EVER (she is like the missionary`s mom) and her cute 90 year old mom. The poor thing has an awful memory and says she wants to get baptized and then changes her mind. Haha so we invited her to be baptized but she changed her mind. We will keep trying but we will see haha.
At one point this week, we were having a rough day, so decided to go into a pet store really fast to cheer ourselves up. Let me tell ya, IT WORKED. And we met some awesome people. Sorry I just had to include that to describe this weeks pictures :)
Friday and Saturday were the best days to be a missionary EVER. Let me tell you why :)
First, it started off with Zone Training Meeting. I love meeting with other missionaries, my testimony is always strengthened by seeing them and hearing from them. Ahh I just love missionaries. After ZTM we went out streeting at the ShoTenGai (indoor mall) and caroled :) The other missionaries sang while I, the newest missionary (aka NO ability to speak japanese) was picked to be the one who talk to everyone and invite them all to our christmas party that next day. I was nervous but it went so well! Seriously, I was shocked! I ended up talking to so many people and handing out over 400 invitations! It was incredible! I met a man who had a huge lizard on his back with a huge bow on its head. He talked to us for a while and said he was born in Utah! Crazy, right? He was a little strange but definitely somebody who you dont forget! Another man came up to me and just started rubbing my arm. It was hilarious haha we were all like "What the heck is going on...." Sometimes funny things happen to us blondes in places like Japan. Haha it is all just one big adventure. I love it.
Now for Saturday. We caroled and talked to more people earlier that day and then went to meet up with a vietnamese man who we met yesterday. He wanted to come to the party, and even though he hardly spoke japanese, we found a way to talk about meeting up before the party so that we could all go together. While we were waiting for him outside of the Eki (train station), a man came up to me and was like "Are you Mormon? Do you believe in Joseph Smith?" And I was just like "Yes! Yes! Are you a member of the church?" and he talked to us for a second about how he wasnt a member but wanted to know why there are so many churches and which one he should join and all this crazy stuff. It was incredible. Then he left to catch his train before we could really say anything else. So anyways, remember that man. But back to saturday, so we met our new vietnamese friend and he ended up bringing 4 of his friends! All from vietnam! They are SO CUTE. Oh my goodness, the cutest human beings ever. And they are coming to Family Home Evening tonight. SO excited :) So we were off to the christmas party- HUGE SUCCESS. It was so much fun and SO many people came!! Three high school girls who I had met the day before in the ShoTenGai showed up and we had so much fun together. I spent the whole time talking with them (well... trying to talk with them) and they helped me out a ton with my japanese. I told them all about missionaries and everything. They are coming to eikaiwa on wednesday... cant wait to see where things go with them. They are so awesome. Also a couple who we invited at the eki showed up. They are so awesome! It would be so cool to teach a couple, because then we could talk about the blessings of temple marriage and everything. Ahh, I am so excited for the teaching opportunities that are opening up. I am looking forward to great things :)
|Spiders in Japan|
Okay, so sunday. The man who asked if we were mormon at the eki SHOWED UP AT THE CHURCH. Like, what?! He just showed up! And we taught him the restoration in the kitchen of our building because all the other rooms were full. Haha it was so cool. He has now become a solid investigator and we are so excited to see where things go with him. On sunday we also went with the Branch to sing and do service at a handicap home. You could say I almost fell over from being so happy. My favorite things all at once. Being a missionary. Being with church members. Singing christmas songs. Being with a ton of amazing people. I love handicapped people so much and think they are angels. I just about fell in love with every single one of those sweet spirits. We are looking forward to going back and serving there with some of the church members sometime soon :) I cannot wait.
This week all in all was SUCH a great week. We have a lot of potential here in Matsuyama and it is so great to be able to see the work of the Lord move forward. I know that He is preparing people for us to find. This gospel is so true and makes me so happy. I love being a missionary! I love Matsuyama! I love this church! I love my Heavenly Father and am so grateful for His love towards each one of His children. The Book of Mormon is TRUE, one hundred percent, and I LOVE that book. I LOVE that book. I am so grateful for the knowledge that I have and that I get to share it with others.
I hope you all have the best christmas ever. Remember that Heavenly Father gave his son Jesus Christ for each and every one of us. Jesus Christ is the Savior and Redeemer of the world, and He has paved the way for us to return back to His presence. I am so grateful for my Savior. Please remember your Savior during this time of celebration. Give a gift to someone you love this Christmas by helping them come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ. This gospel is the best gift that can be given. Spend time with your families and truly enjoy one anothers company. I know that you will be blessed and will have a wonderful and memorable christmas if you do so.
”For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son. That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16.
I love you all so much. I hope you can feel my love from the beautiful island of Shikoku. I wish you all the best Christmas.
Stay warm and drink lots of hot cocoa :)
Ai Shite Imasu,