Kasteler In Kobe

Kasteler In Kobe

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Till We Meet Again Japan!

Hello everyone! I hope you all had a great week. So this weeks email has a little bit of shocking news....
I will be home this saturday. With everything going on with my feet, and the conditions continuing to get worse, it has been decided that I need to go home and figure everything out before I can continue my mission. This has been a really hard week for me, as I am sure you can imagine. Thinking about leaving this beautiful country and these even more beautiful people breaks my heart. But, I know that the Lord has a plan for me. He will provide angels to bear me up through this trial, and I know that there are lessons that need to be learned and things that I need to experience. Heavenly Father knows everything, and He knows what I need to go through in order to become the person who I need to become. He sees our full potential and is going to put us through experiences in order for us to achieve that potential. 


This past week was full of doctors appointments and phone calls and quite a bit of tears, but it was even more full of spiritual experiences, prayer, blessings, and miracles. The past few days have completely changed my attitude about everything. On friday we had a Zone Training Meeting that I seriously feel like changed my life. I am so grateful for my zone leaders and the meeting that we had. The spirit was so strong and we had a testimony meeting at the end that allowed me to bear my testimony of the Saviors love. I have felt it in my life so powerfully recently, and I know that He loves us so much. More than we can comprehend. The next two days were a lot of goodbyes. As soon as one person in the Matsuyama Branch found out that I was going home, we got phone calls, emails, presents, letters, food... everything you can imagine haha. It was like we were being swarmed with love! I even had a 20th birthday party thrown for me after church yesterday as a surprise. I was able to wear one of the most special kimonos, ones that you wear on your 20th birthday, and eat wonderful japanese food and be with the people who I love so much. It was such a treat. I am so grateful for this branch and honestly dont think I would be able to do this without them. 
Sunday night we had family home evening at the Branch Presidents house, and for it we all just went around the room and bore our testimonies. The spirit was so strong and I am so grateful for the opportunity that I had to bear my testimony again. Testimonies are so dang powerful and cool. Ahh, they are just the best. And on the way home, the cutest lady ever in the branch was driving us home, and she just started crying saying that we are like her kids. She always prayed and asked God for kids for the past 30 years, but she said instead of sending her actual children of her own, He sent her the missionaries. I just started crying too and told her that she is my japanese mom. It was such a sweet moment. Man and now I am starting to cry again haha anyways new topic. 
This morning a member picked us up and took us to the Castle in Matsuyama, called Matsuyama Jo. It was awesome and we were able to wear old medieval armor! Pretty awesome :) we took a chair lift to the top, since I cant really walk right now, and it was POURING snow the whole time! so much fun. 

I am learning to trust Heavenly Father more and more every day, and because of that, I am growing closer to Him and my Savior Jesus Christ. As sad as I am to leave Japan and these amazing people, I know that this will be good for me and will help me in many ways. I am grateful for the opportunity that I did have to come to this country and be a representative of Jesus Christ. It has been the best adventure that I have ever been on, and I have learned more than I ever thought that I could. This mission experience has changed my life, and my decision to serve a mission has shaped me into who I am. I couldnt be more humbled or more grateful for this experience, and I am looking forward to continuing being a missionary for as long as I live. Hopefully I will come back to Japan soon, but it is all up to the Lord and His timing.

See you all soon,
Kasteler Shimai

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