Merry Christmas! It is so wonderful to hear about what a been
happening at home for Christmas. It does feel different being here in
Japan for Christmas, but it's not a bad different. :) The Matsudo ward
has really spoiled us this week with Christmas presents and delicious
treats and goodies. They are all so kind.
There are lots of lights everywhere for Christmas here, but we hardly
ever see a Christmas tree. Most of the members have trees though, so
Being a missionary at Christmas time is really a neat experience.
We've seen some pretty cool miracles this week!
One of my favorite things we have done this week for dendou has been
singing Christmas carols at the train station! There are hundreds and
thousands of people who gather at the eki everyday going to and from
various places. It's a really neat opportunity to see and talk with so
many people about the true meaning of Christmas.
Last week, we met a woman on the street and were able to be her a Book
of Mormon. Her name is Hiromi San. Yesterday, she was able
to come to church, and she loved it! We taught her about the
restoration during church, and the Spirit was really strong. She had
some really good questions and at the end of the lesson she prayed for
the first time. She accepted the challenge to be baptized and she said
that she wants to bring her Philippingin friend with her to church
next time. Such a big miracle! :)
Yesterday, Sister Morley and I had a really neat experience while we
were looking for a potential investigators house. We visited the
house, and no one was home. We were just getting ready to return to
the church on our bikes, but my bike lock got stuck and I spent an
extra minute trying to get it unlocked. While fiddling with my lock
(missionary problems), a woman from a near by apartment came running
out the door to the area right next to us, just 5-6 meters away. Her
daughter, about 10 years old was with her. The mother sat down on the
first step of the entranceway with her head in her hands and began to
hysterically weep. Her daughter knelt down at her mother's feet and
put her hands on her mother face, their heads touching together.
Something horrible had just happened. I turned to look at sister
Morley. I could see the concern she had in her eyes and we were left
with the question of what to do. As we watched and listened, the woman
received a phone call. From the conversation, I learned that this
woman had just gone through a divorce and that she had no where to
stay and didn't have a job. My heart ached to share the gospel with
her. I felt at that moment that everything this woman needed was what
we were prepared to share with her. As we talked with her, she confide
in us and thanked us for stopping to talk with her. We directed her to
the church and were able to share a message of God's love for us. It
was a tender moment. I don't think I will ever forget it. Everything
really does happen for a reason.
So many miracles! However, the best miracle that I think has happened
has been within the walls of my own heart. This year for Christmas, I
decided that I wanted to really give my heart to God. As a result, I
feel like God has really been testing my heart. Sometimes things are
really difficult, but I God knows us perfectly and will never give us
opposition that we cannot withstand and overcome. This week, I've
learned whenever we try and change something in our lives that the
opposition and temptations get harder. The Lord tries our hearts, and
sometimes it hurts, but the result is so much more beautiful. The Lord
really can make us a masterpiece if we allow Him to. I am far from
that masterpiece but slowly I feel like the Lord is able to shape me
through the things I am learning everyday. I testify that the Lord
knows what we need to go through in order to be exalted. I know that
Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. He was born for us and He is
the ultimate gift. He loves us with an infinite love. His greatest joy
is our joy and happiness. He knows what makes us truly happy. The Lord
knows our sorrows and pains. He has felt them all. He knows us
perfectly. He loves us perfectly. He is the one who was chosen from
the beginning. He was born for us.
"...And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree
from Cæsar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.
And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth,
into Judæa, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem... To be
taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished
that she should be delivered. (Luke 2:1-7)"
"...There shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a
Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the Lord shall
rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of
counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the
Lord... (Isaiah 11:1-2)"
"And He shall be called Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Father of
heaven and earth, the Creator of all things from the beginning; and
his mother shall be called Mary. (Mosiah 3:8) "
"...Behold, the virgin whom thou seest is the mother of the Son of God...
And I looked and beheld the virgin again, bearing a child in her arms.
And the angel said unto me: Behold the Lamb of God, yea, even the Son
of the Eternal Father! " (1 Nephi 11:18-21)
And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling
clothes, and laid him in a manger... (Luke 2:7) "
Yea, Lord, we greet thee,
Born this happy morning;
Jesus, to thee be all glory giv’n.
Son of the Father,
Now in flesh appearing;
Oh, come, let us adore him;
Oh, come, let us adore him;
Oh, come, let us adore him,
Christ, the Lord.
"Come unto Christ and offer your whole souls unto him." Omni 1:26
Merry CHRISTmas :)
Sister Hubbard xoxo