This has been the biggest adventure- not done yet, and reminds me of a quote except I can't perfectly quote it but something along the lines of "the road is narrow, the way is rough, the companions are few, theGuide is reliable" especially that part about the Guide. Truly this week saw in little ways that this is Heavenly Father's work.
Also this will be short, not a lot of time... Monday after adventuring around Kyoto we went after a bunch of PI's
and were able to invite people to our Christmas Party! Christmas dendo is the greatest thing ever, even in Japan- non Christian country, they know Christmas and it softens/opens hearts like nothing else!
Tuesday found City Hall and went looking after service opportunities. Then passed out fliers by a college with the elders in Santa hats and forgot to take pictures :( At first we tried singing Christmas songs (hymns) and passing out but that definitely didn't work but once we just had a good time, everyone was way more interested! Then an
investigator who we haven't seen in a long time mailed us and we were able to meet her! Plus top off the night with my companion making tacos plus homemade salsa !
Wednesday with recent converts and it's so much fun to literally see their testimonies grow. 81 yr old grandma is really starting to understand and retain, plus a less active finally did her BOM reading this week- that's a big deal!! Then Fujii Shimai, another recent convert read from 2nd Nephi clear to the middle of Mosiah this week,
Thursday was service day and tried to visit lots of lonely people then did a garbage pick-up project along a street by the church - lots of people smiled at us, so I'd say it was pretty successful.
Friday we had District Meeting in Fushimi- good stuff as always, with of course Indo Curry after. Even bettter that night was a recent convert who's been struggling a lot lately was smiling and even laughed a little tonight! Laughter is the best medicine- big testimony of that!
Saturday we had a really productive DCS which always feels good. Then Fujii Shimai took the next step in BOM and we were able to help her start to apply what she reads to herself, find answers, because it is more than just an interesting story. My love for the BOM grew as she's been going through for the first time and pointing out things like- Noah was a horrible guy wasn't he?!? But WOW Alma's so amazing- I can't wait to starting reading Book of Alma, it's long so it has to be good, right?? :) She just makes me so happy! Cool miracle seeing how
Heavenly Father guides us without us knowing. We wanted to stop by a\ former investigator who lives by a recent convert, Takeda Shimai, so we dropped by her first and found that her granddaughters were there. They come with her to church sometimes and we were able to teach a Christmas, Jesus Christ message and their grandma gave them the calendar the church made in Japan for the 25 days of service. They
Sunday was a good fast Sunday after church received a kimono from some members- adorable grandma's! And then it was a big of a long day being out in the rain (we planned a day with lots of biking and finding, not realizing it would rain) so that was pretty cold, but made coming back at the end of the night feel better!
That's a really short version, plus didn't take any pictures this week, but truly so grateful for our Savior Jesus Christ. I love Christmas! Relief Society president bore her testimony about how following the church's service Christmas thing has helped her remember Christ throughout the day in simple ways, I realized what a tremendous
blessing it is to be a missionary- a representative of Jesus Christ 24/7 for 18 months. The feeling is unreal. I have never been alone, I can always feel Heavenly Father's love come in various ways- sometimes it's that He gives challenges to help us grow but those are also just evidence of His love! I know He loves each and every one of you- please check out the video and campaign on mormon.org because it truly makes a diffference- first in you then in those around you!
Love, Wagstaff 姉妹
This week has been really interesting- somehow in my mind I had this image that there are tons of blessings at the end of your mission and it was smooth sailing. A lot of big miracles because you've worked so hard and that's how Heavenly Father shows he loves you.
Now what I'm saying isn't that Heavenly Father isn't constantly in this work and that I'm not seeing blessings- not that, just that the end is just like the rest, ups and downs. I think I like that. For some reason, all of our investigators dropped us and during finding time we've been getting a lot of no's. But that's okay, because we
still know God has a plan. He has perfect timing. One blessing is that we are focusing really hard on how to improve- constantly after reach lesson, how can he next be better. Something I liked about mom and dad's emails this week was that they are still constantly improving as well- that's what we're all doing.
Plus we had a big fiasco in Sunday School that honestly I don't. Understand
all the details- recent converts mom is an investigator and everyone in the ward has a different opinion about how to help her and we taught her with a member couple during Sunday school but then after church got interrogated by a member of the bishopric and Ward mission leader and still don't know why but it's okay because we can go back, apologize even though we don't know why and get more clarification. Really it's an opportunity to really be Christ-like. He asks us to love enemies as well as friends (and the members definitely aren't
enemies!!) but it takes work to become true friends.
Through every experience we can laugh and have a good time. We got wet then it got super cold and we were so cold but it's okay because came back to the church at the end of he Night to submit our numbers for the week and elders were there too and we could all laugh about how rough it is sometimes! Truly truly truly joyful. Plus I know that there are always prepare people out there. It's unlikely that I'll see a baptism in the next week, so I'll finish my mission without having physically seen an investigator baptized and that's okay because it's not the end- my work is just part of Heavenly Father's great plan.
Drew and Tash- I hope that you are preparing to become a missionary. I hope that you are solidifying your base in the gospel of Jesus Christ now because it will always be a blessing to you. I hope you come to love the Book of Mormon, I LOVE the Book of Mormon, I think more than any possession I'm going to take home with me, the copy that has been carried around with me this past year and is a little worn, very marked up is likely my favorite thing. I hope that you love Jesus Christ and through following His example come to know more of Him. I hope you aren't afraid to share His lights with the people around you- we are asked to invite and be an example. Others have their agency, but a missionary's purpose is to invite and help others to come unto Christ. I know that investigators I have taught will be baptized. I also know that someday, hopefully soon, a temple will be announced in the Kansai area and that's going to be a great day.
Love you guy! Katya