Monday, June 16, 2014
Monday, June 16, 2014
About the photos: This is at a Relief Society activity We had last week! This is Sister Date and me, and Sister Usui and me. I love them both so much! This is Sugiyama San. We went over to his house yesterday and he fed us deer meat (not sure how I feel about that). He was our investigator, but we passed him to the Elders which made me sad. But, I love him! He is so cute and small and awesome. This other picture is from bowling today with Sister Kikuchi.
On Monday, June 16, 2014 Sister Johnson wrote:
We have had a busy day today; a member and her sister (a potential investigator!!) took us to lunch at this suuuuper authentic soba restaurant and then we went bowling! And then after that, Alcazar Shimai and I went to the mall, and I got some rain shoes that are super cute and 100 percent made out of rubber so they are all the way waterproof! And the best part is that they were only six dollars! Yay! Thriftiness! So, now I am here emailing you.
The rainy season is going on and on, but this week, we actually had a few days of brilliant sunshine, which did WONDERS for my health! It was so nice, and we spent most of those days outside playing sports with our investigators. Right now, we are having frisbee activities twice a week, and a baseball activity once a week! It has been so much fun to play sports and become really close with our investigators and also other friends like students that come to Eikaiwa. It is such a great way to just relax and become really great friends. We also have a lot of members that are starting to get involved, which is awesome because they are also becoming friends with all of our investigators. It is so great to see all of the people coming together in Ishinomaki right now! The unity that we are seeing between the missionaries, investigators, and members has been so wonderful. Things are really starting to pick up here, and I am so excited for the success that Ishinomaki will be seeing in the future.
This week, we were only able to meet with one investigator, Yuka Chan, but we had a great lesson! We watched Finding Faith in Christ together, and the spirit was very strong. After the movie ended, we asked Yuka Chan how she felt, and she was like, "that movie was so awesome that I almost think it's all a lie!" Haha. 'Almost' was the keyword there. We then bore testimony that Christ really is the Savior and that He really did perform the miracles that were depicted in the movie. Yuka Chan ended the lesson by saying the closing prayer. Usually we give her something to say, but this time, she did it all by herself!! She said what she was feeling and everything, and it was wonderful! We all left feeling happy. A wonderful member, Sister Taeko, joined us for the lesson, and I am so happy that she was there. Taeko Shimai always bears really simple testimony that is really easy for Yuka Chan to understand. They are becoming friends, and I am so very happy. The sad thing is that Yuka Chan is moving to Canada in two weeks to do a foreign exchange there, so we won't be able to meet her anymore. That is super sad, but I am excited for her because she will have so much fun in Canada.
We had two other lessons lined up with Yuki San and Michiru San, but they both were cancelled, unfortunately. But that is okay because we have more appointments for this week!
There is a less-active member in our branch named Ganbe Kyodai (he is one of the people I am friends with on Facebook actually. He posted all those fun videos of rhythm games), and we have been working with him since Luk Shimai and I came to Ishinomaki. He is so awesome! I love Ganbe Kyodai. We have become great friends. This week, we had a mogi lesson (a role-play lesson) with him, and we decided to talk about following the Prophet. The mogi was pretty normal, us butchering Japanese and him being nice enough to pretend we did a good job, but after the mogi, we sat and talked with him for a while. I asked him about his experience with the tsunami. He had a crazy experience! He was at home that day because it was his day off. The day after was actually supposed to be his day off, but one of his co-workers asked to trade him, so there he was at home. When the earthquake hit at 2:46, his house was crumbled, but he was able to get his 94 year old Grandpa and 86 year old Grandma to the evacuation area safely. After that was when the tsunami came, and his house was completely ruined. The structure was still standing, but there was black water that filled the entire first floor all the way to the ceiling. He said that a few days after the disaster, he found out that the head of his company had been swept away in the tsunami because he decided it was safe enough to leave the evacuation center and go back to work. Him and a lot of Ganbe Kyodai's coworkers were killed. He said that if he had not switched his day off with his coworker, he probably would have been swept away too. After telling us the story, Ganbe Kyodai said that he has never felt God's love and guidance more than he did on that occasion. He recognized the Lord's guidance and hand in his life over those two days, and it was a huge testimony to him that God is aware of him and his family, and that He loves them very much. It was a wonderful story, and I could feel the Spirit very strongly. Ganbe Kyodai has such a strong testimony, and I am so grateful for his faith. I am sad that he is not coming to church right now, but I know that as he continues to have faith in the Savior, that he will come back.
It is amazing to see the hand of the Lord in my life here in Ishinomaki. There are times when I feel like I can do nothing right, like I am the absolute worst missionary in the whole world and that I should just quit. But then there are times when I can see in real time the Lord work through me to bless the lives of those around me. I can feel the love of the Savior flowing through me, almost as if it was blood flowing in my veins. My Heavenly Family has blessed me with the gift of Love, and I am grateful that they teach me how to use that gift to the best of my ability. They watch over me everyday, and I can feel Their love. For that, I am grateful.
I love you Momma! I hope that you get better soon! I hope you know how much I love you, and that you are the best Momma ever.