Sister Hubbard's district in Tokyo
These two and getting baptised on Sunday!!! :D ah! So proud of them,
and love them so much!
and love them so much!
A big escalator in a train station, or the Sky Tree and it says "hang on tight" written on the side
Sisters in zone
I forgot to tell you all last week that my p-day would be on Tuesday this week because of Temple p-day! Haha, sorry. I'm safe and am doing well. The temple was really special today, and I really felt the Spirit strong as I went though. The temple is such an amazing place, and I'm so grateful we get to go once every transfer.
This week has been crazy busy! I have a lot to write about, but I think I will tell you all a little bit about exchanges to start.
As I mentioned last week, I went to Uraysu for exchanges and spent the night with Sister Wharton. It was a great exchange! We saw a lot of miracles together. We visited a couple people, and they were all amazing experiences, but I would like to share an experience that we had with a recent convert named Nadia. She is Mongolian, and joined the church earlier this year. She has been less active for the last little while. Sister Wharton and Sister Sargent had been trying to visit her for the past 2 transfers together, but every time they went, she wasn't home. Sister Wharton and I were so lucky she was at home when we went to visit! Anyway, Nadia doesn't speak very much Japanese, and she only knows a little bit of English, and so between the two languages it was a little bit difficult to teach her. During the lesson, she was having a hard time understanding what we were trying to say, so Sister Wharton suggested that I share a scripture with her. I flipped through my Book of Mormon and opened to Jacob 3:1-2 that were marked from a few days previous in my study. Nadia opened her Mongolian Book of Mormon and we read the scripture together.
1 But behold, I, Jacob, would speak unto you that are pure in heart. Look unto God with firmness of mind, and pray unto him with exceeding faith, and he will console you in your afflictions, and he will plead your cause, and send down justice upon those who seek your destruction.
2 O all ye that are pure in heart, lift up your heads and receive the pleasing word of God, and feast upon his love; for ye may, if your minds are firm, forever.
After reading the scripture, we asked her what she thought about it. There was a long pause...
I felt impressed to ask another question at that time..."Nadia, when was the last time you felt God's love?" Nadia looked down, silently thinking about the question... With tears in her eyes,
She said that she felt God's love so strong at her baptism, but that she hadn't felt it since.
I thought to myself for a minute or so about what she was saying and how we might be able to help her. I felt impressed to pray together at that time. Before praying, I promised her that as we prayed together, that we would be able to feel God's love. I asked her to pay attention to her feelings and to listen as we prayed. This was such a powerful experience. I can't even begin to describe the feelings I felt at that time. As I prayed, I felt such a warm love for her. I felt so strongly of God's love for her. It was an amazing experience that I will never forget! Prayer is so powerful, and I learned that when we pray for others we are able to love them more too. Nadia agreed to come to church on Sunday before we left. Such a miracle! Amazing things happen on exchanges, that's for sure!
This week, we also had interviews with president and sister Nagano! I was so excited to talk with them both. Interviews went really well, and I feel like I have grown closer to both of them. They are both so special. During my interview with president Nagano, we received some amazing revelation together. It was a really neat experience for me. I won't tell you all the details, but in the interview, after talking about my Koiwa area, there was a small pause... The spirit was really strong, and both of us looked at each other and president Nagano said that he felt it was time for me to transfer. It was really neat. I wasn't expecting him to tell me anything, but I was feeling the same way. It's so neat how the Spirit works. He said he didn't know for sure, but that He felt at that time that I should transfer to another area. Transfer calls are on the 31st, so I guess we will see what happens and where the Lord would have me be. I love this area so much, so if I am meant to stay, I will be so happy. Most sisters stay in an area for 2-3 transfers, so I have been really lucky to be here in Koiwa for 4 transfers. My interview with sister Nagano was really good too. She reminds me so much of Grandma Tessa! It's been really neat to talk with her and see how similar she is in the way she thinks, speaks, and just her mannerisms in general I guess. She is the sweetest person ever, and her heart is so big. She has so much love and she shares it with everyone. I'm so grateful for her and for President Nagano. I think I have a lot to learn from both of them as time moves forward.
Lately, I've been able to see a big change in my Japanese-A huge blessing! Japanese is really a hard language, but I've learned that as I focus on loving people that I am always able to say what I need too. Sometimes I would like to say more, but I've learned that keeping it simple really is better. Sometimes, when we meet people who speak English, I start complicating things because I am able to say so much! Haha, maybe that's one of the reasons why I was called to speak Japanese, but it really is a blessing to be able to say what I need to. I can speak most of what I am thinking now, and so I'm really excited about that! Things always come little by little, and I've learned that patience really is a virtue, haha. I think I need a little bit more of it, but God is helping me and I can really see His hand in my life everyday.
Well, this Sunday is really exciting!! Megumi and Minami Chan are being baptized after church and we are so excited for them!! They both have such amazing faith and are trying to read the whole Book of Mormon before Sunday. They inspire me so much, and I feel like they are so spiritually mature and sensitive to the Spirit. I think God knew that I would need them these past two transfers, and so He let me stay here with them. I'm really excited for their baptism! The ward is really involved in the program and they are preparing a special dinner for afterwards. The Ward has really reached out to them and they already have visiting teachers and many fellow shippers. I think the will have a strong support system within the church after I leave, which I am so grateful for. Ward members are so crucial in helping new converts and less actives. I feel like that this something I have definitely been able to see here in Koiwa. Anyway, we are so excited for them!! :)
I'm pretty sure I told you about the Chinese girl that we found on the train last week, but if I didn't, this might be a little bit out of place, haha. We were able to meet with her this week for the first time! We are really excited about her! We decided to meet for ice cream and then walk to the church and give her a church tour. (My first transfer with Sister Trent, we decided that this is always a good combination- icecream and church tours, haha) After we gave her a tour of the church, we asked her if we could sing for her. She said yes, and sister Ahn began playing some of the primary songs on the piano in the Chapel. I sang, and the spirit was really strong. This Chinese girl began trying to sing along with us, and we could tell that she felt the Spirit. We gave her the lyrics to look at so that she could sing with us. After we finished singing, she told us that she wanted to come to church and that she felt a really peaceful feeling in her heart that she had never felt before. Such a miracle!
I've said it before, but music really is so powerful! It has the ability to soften people's hearts and make them open to learning more about the gospel. So neat! The Spirit is always so strong when we sing hymns.
Well, I think that's about all I have time for this week, but I love you all so much! Thanks for your letters and for all of your love and support. I'm so grateful to be here in Japan and to be a missionary.