Sunday, September 25, 2011

September 26, 2011

I guess I should tell you how transfer calls turned out this morning. Anderton 長老 is headed off to Kouchi on Shikoku and I`m staying here. I`m training. I`m not quite sure what to think. Only four elders are coming, they`re all from America. I`m a little excited and definitely nervous. This transfer was my first time being a senior companion to a gaijin and this next transfer it will only be multiplied. Here we go...

So we finished last Monday evening doing a scavenger hunt for the YSA (all three of them that showed up, including our recent convert) and it seemed to go really well. They asked us to come up with it about a month ago as a test run so they could see what it was like. They plan to do a huge one next month for Halloween. They plan on giving it a 伝道 (proslyting) purpose so hopefully members will come and bring their friends.

There was yet another typhoon this week. We were perfectly fine though. It rained really hard when we woke up, but by the time we finished study it was sunny outside. It`s almost like the typhoon`s just skip over Nara. We keep hearing about how bad they are, but there`s usually nothing out here.

On a rainy day, there weren`t many people to teach outside. So like it says in the scriptures, we preached to "every creature" we saw.
The deer in Nara are designated as National Treasures in Japan.
Our Ward Mission Leader took us out to dinner this week. He`s one of the funniest people I`ve ever met. He lived in the U.S. for 8 years and will only speak in English to us. I tried to send a video to you but this computer is acting up.

I also hit my year mark this week. It was interesting thinking about the day that I walked into the MTC. In some ways it does feel like an eternity ago; like it was another lifetime. At the same time, when I think of specific experiences, they were yesterday. I can`t believe that I`m halfway through. It`s an odd feeling. It`s odd to think that everyone at home is living normal lives while I do this. Sometimes I feel like everything else I left is frozen in time because my life is so different now. I know it will be a shock when I return, perhaps moreso than when I left. Honestly, I do feel like I can look back and be proud of what I`ve done with this year. I feel like I`ve grown and learned and accomplished so much. It would be hard for me to finish now. However, that only makes me more excited for what is to come. Knowing that I`ll only continue to grow and get better at what I do is really exciting. I can`t wait for what the next year has in store for me.

Two of our investigators canceled their appointments this week. That was no fun. One was due to the weather, another was due to his work. That`s no fun. I still think they`re both going to really continue to progress and grow in the gospel, it`s just going to take a lot more time now. I hate that. I still really need to work on being patient. I am staying in this area for another transfer which, funny enough, has been rare for me on my mission. I will get to work long-term with some investigators.

Yesterday was a good day at church. I LOVE that the branch president invites us to branch council. It makes such a difference. When we attend branch council, everyone knows what we`re up to, and even if they don`t help us directly, we know they`re praying for us and our investigators. During the meeting, I slowly realized how what I was doing at that second was absolutely impossible for me only a short 9 months ago. I had the floor in the meeting whereas, at the beginning of my mission I would sit very quietly in those kind of meeting and just act like I knew what was going on. It`s a good feeling. I think I need to take more time to think about and notice things like that. Answers to my prayers from so long ago. I need to be better at that. The Lord gave me exactly the help I asked for and I just manage to take it for granted. Things really do come gradually and on his time table...makes it harder to notice sometimes.

Our Golden Investigator decided to go visit his dad in Kumamoto this week and apparently they had all been fasting for it last fast sunday. This branch is awesome. We are keeping our fingers crossed and really praying that he will come back with permission to get baptized.

Sounds like a good week at home. Best of luck to Sister Wirthlin. She`ll be a great missionary.

The fundraiser performance sounds like it was fun. I loved hearing about the "singing in the dark" experience. It really brought back memories. Really, being in that department in that school is just full of moments like that. Life-defining moments. I have more than I could ever explain. I really became who I am today on that stage. I`m excited to hear about what happens for the rest of the school year.

All is well here. Do you have any questions? I feel like I have nothing to write about sometimes. I guess that`s all the time I have this week. Have a good one!

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