This month has been my fourth month in Hodogaya and lemmie tell you,
Japan in October is paradise! The weather is literally so beautiful
every day! And I love my area!
We had a big moment with Ana! Last night our recent convert Don called
me and told me how he walked his dog over to Ana's house and had a
good chat with her. She was nervous that our only intention for coming
over to teach her was to baptize her and she doesn't want to be
baptized! (*palm to the forehead* that was our bad for not making our
purpose clear.) Whoops. But Don resolved tons of her concerns! And he
taught her more about Joseph Smith and the restoration too! He was so
spankin' excited when he called me! I love him so much! Ana wants to
learn more about the church and she wants to study our doctrine. Don
assured me that this is prime! He said that's exactly how he felt when
the Elders first started teaching him. Then he found our for himself
that it was true and he joined the church! Man I'm so proud of Don!
Yesterday a less active member named Nathalie Gomez came to church
too! And the members took such good care of her that I barely had any
time to meet her and talk to her! PRIME! Michelle invited Nathalie to
come to church with her and then all the members talked to her and
introduced themselves! I'm so happy for the ward for being good
fellowshipers and Nathalie said she's coming back next week! That's
all it takes to make people active again! We just gotta get her a
calling and she'll be all set!
We had Elder Yamashita of the Seventy come to our mission! We had a
conference with him all day and it blew my mind! So awesome!
He was fresh back from conference and from receiving trainings from
the apostles! So imagine the power he had when he delivered his
training! My favorite thing he taught us was that "members don't help
missionaries with their missionary work, missionaries help the members
with their missionary work". That perspective flipped how I thought
about my role as a missionary! If any of you need advice on how to
invite your friends to church, or how to take that initial approach,
or how to do missionary work period, invite the full-time missionaries
in your area over to your house and have them teach you and do roll
plays with you! Sharing the gospel is easy and the only way for the
work to move forward at a more rapid pace is through the members!
I read an awesome article this morning from the December 2014 Ensign
called, "Life More Abundant". The writer talks about how she
discovered ways to live her life more fully and I really loved this
"We ought to take advantage of opportunities that come our way to
travel, serve a mission, accept a calling, increase our education,
learn a new skill, or develop a talent, because the Lord requires us
to do all in our power now to cultivate an abundant life. Elder
Wirthlin declared, “No matter our age, circumstances, or abilities,
each one of us can create something remarkable of his life.”...I have
striven to follow the advice of Sister Kristen M. Oaks, wife of Elder
Dallin H. Oaks, when she counseled young single adults to 'depend on
the Lord, enjoy every opportunity, and delight in the life you have.'"
It's so important that we live life in each beautiful moment taking
advantage of every opportunity the Lord places in our path! As we
trust Him and His plan for us, He'll help us become more than we could
even imagine we'd be! I know He loves us and that through the
atonement we can always more forward and upwards!