Thursday, January 28, 2016

Week 13 in Nagamine

Something really amazing happened this week!! I found out that I can
speak Japanese!! I don't know what happened but the past couple days
it's like a flip switched and I'm understanding and speaking so much
better now! I'm definitely still not fluent, but I can communicate
which is something I've been struggling to do since I've been here. We
were in a lesson yesterday and usually if I don't understand, instead
of translating it for me, my companion will repeat back to them what
they said (because I can usually always understand her Japanese) and
so this way we can really clarify that we are understanding them, and
then I can understand too. But during yesterday's lesson I didn't even
need her to repeat it back because I understood!! I still have so far
to go haha, but I feel like it's coming which I have been struggling
to see so far. The gift of tongues is so real. On Sunday during relief
society, we broke up into little groups, and somehow we got on the
topic of missionaries learning Japanese. Japanese people will always
compliment your Japanese no matter how bad you are at it, but members
are actually usually very honest if you aren't all that great. But
they were talking about how compared to anyone else they've seen learn
Japanese compared to missionaries learning Japanese, missionaries who
have been out 6 months compared to someone who has been studying and
living in Japan for a year are so much better at the language. We
definitely have the Lord helping us!
This week was a way fun week! Last Monday we went to the Kumamoto
castle again! But this time with 2 other elders that weren't able to
go last time. It was way fun, but it is getting really cold!! It
snowed like crazy on Sunday. For some reason I wasn't expecting to see
snow in the southern part of Japan, but we got it! Apparently it's
rare to have so much snow in Kumamoto. I thought dendoing in snow
would be miserable, but it's actually really fun haha! The first time
it got really cold, we weren't prepared and I was so cold!! But after
that we haven't gone outside without being super prepared, so it's
been way good. And everyone makes a mini snowman and puts it on their
front porch. Like everyone! It's way cute! I haven't seen a big
snowman anywhere yet though.
Tuesday we went out to to shabushabu which is basically where you
throw raw meat and veggies and whatever kind of food into a lot of
boiling sauce, and you eat it out of the pot. It was sooo good! We
went with one of the kumamoto sisters investigators who comes to
eikaiwa. She is the cutest thing ever, but left to Fukuoka for a
couple of weeks to receive a promotion for her job. Haha she left on
Sunday and she came to Nagamine ward in the middle of sacrament
meeting to say goodbye to us because she couldn't come to the Kumamoto
sacrament meeting because she had to catch a train. Anyway in the
middle of sacrament meeting a member comes up to me and tells me that
there is someone outside that needs to talk to me, and my companion
was on the stand because she was giving a talk, and you can't just
leave the chapel without your companion, so I was like super flustered
and kind of stayed half in the chapel and half in the foyer.  Until
the elders ran to my rescue and my companion left the stand to come
see what was going on haha. So all the missionaries left in the middle
of sacrament meeting just so someone could say bye to us.
Anyway, all 3 of our investigators are doing so well! We have two with
baptismal dates and one who is just the sweetest lady ever and I love
her so much.
Parmley Shimai and I have been really trying to focus on our
investigators needs as we teach and we have seen some amazing miracles
from it. We had a special missionary broadcast this week with members
of the missionary council teaching us and it was so good. One thing I
really got out of it is that we are only the Lords tools and we can
only bring the gospel to them. They have to be willing to bring it
into their hearts, and that only works through the spirit. As we've
been focusing on the needs of our investigators, we do our best to
bring the gospel to their lives, but they have to be willing to open
their hearts to the spirit that will testify to them. It is with
investigators, and the same with members. It is so easy to close your
heart to the spirit. Sometimes you don't even realizing your doing it.
My companion gave her talk on Sunday about the basics of the gospel.
Sometimes we get so caught up in the in depth facts of the gospel,
that we forget about the basics. Praying. Praying is a basic, but when
was the last time that you really prayed to Heavenly Father? Not a
repetitious blessing on the food or cry out for help when you get
stuck, but a real heartfelt conversation? When was the last time you
read the scriptures and compared it to your life? Putting your name in
place of Nephi, or Alma or maybe even Corianton? And when was the last
time you went to church, not because it's something you do every week
but for the sole purpose that you get to take the sacrament and to
think about Jesus Christ? I know I didn't do it too often before my
mission, and sometimes even now I forget. But the basics are what
brings the spirit into your heart. The basics are what slowly and
surely change your life. I recently watched the Mormon message "The
Hope of Gods light" I wish it was in Japanese because I would show
that video to everyone! It doesn't happen at once. It happens over
time until one day you look back at your experience and realize that
God has been leading you and guiding you the entire time. I love the
gospel so much. Every single day I learn more and more. I love reading
the scriptures every day and sharing my testimony! I love our
Priesthood leaders and that we can use Gods power whenever we need it.
I love the temples and the joy and peace I feel every time I even
think about going. I honestly could go on much longer, but I just
really love the gospel of Jesus Christ. I am so grateful to be a
member and to be able to learn so much from the tools God has given us
to learn from. Life is so good!!
Haha anyway, transfer calls are today and I am really really really
hoping me and Parmley Shimai are staying! But they always come way
after email time, so I will let you know next week what happens :)

Anyway here are more pictures of Kumamoto castle and other random
things :) love you all!!
White Shimai


No comments:

Post a Comment