Special visitors this week! :) Megumi And Minami Chan from Koiwa! They
surprised me and came to Eikaiwa, :) so good to see them. They both
just barely received their patriarchal blessings. So wonderful to see
This is Manami. She was baptised two years ago...She has been to church with us for the last 3 weeks. She's cute. :) this is the gym at the top of the 5 floor church
(Before transfers-we were going through some old sisters clothes in
the house-gross right?) I think they look lovely :) ~~
She wrote me a cute message on our mirror :) so sweet.
Sister Bettridge- sorry we don't have a good picture together yet... She's great though!
Apple pie from and old man I met on the street. He decided to take the lessons and come to church! He brought me this pie to church to thank me for introducing him to the elders. Way cool!
There is this thing in Japan called purikura. You take pictures and it makes your eyes bigger (Japanese joke) as you can see it makes my eyes huge!! Hahaha so funny!
Dear Family, I've had a wonderful week! :) Sister Bettridge and I have really made an effort to try and talk with everyone this past week and we were able to meet some really neat people and invite them to church. We definitely had some harder days where it seemed like everyone we talked would give us us a weird look or ignored us. Gotta love those days! We had interviews this past week and sister Nagano, my mission president's wife, said something that really helped me to this about faith in different way. She said that faith is not a measure of how much you can do everyday, or how successful you are, but a measure of how long you are able to run without giving up. It is a Measure of how much you are willing to give the Lord without receiving the blessings in the needed or wanted time. Our faith is truly shown when we pick ourselves up each time we fall and continuing to serve the Lord despite the circumstance. It helped me think of a lot of the efforts sister Bettridge and I have done in Matsudo lately. You might think that because we were trying to be obedient, talk to everyone, and following the Spirit that we would find and see amazing miracles! It's not always like that, and it's not meant to be. If the Lord gave us miracles every time we asked him for them, then how could we ever learn to exercise our faith and show the Lord where our hearts and loyalty remain? Sister Nagano is so wise! Anyway, what she said has really help me this past week. We talked with over one hundred people and only one or two of them took the time to listen for a little while. It's comforting to now that someday everyone will have the opportunity to hear and learn the gospel. That will be a wonderful day in Japan. I'm truly blessed to be able to be here witnessing it happen slowly but surely. The lord really is at the head of this work. We had an amazing lesson this week with the woman we found at our basketball activity last Saturday. I hadn't taught the restoration in English for over a year (probably since being back home when I would go out with the sister missionaries on splits). It had probably been even longer for sister Bettridge. It was definitely a time when we had to trust in the Lord to guide us in what to say. The Spirit was so strong, and Rochelle really felt the Spirit. She has been searching for the gospel for so long! She has studied many many different religions, but she described them all as not feeling right in her heart. We know that she felt the spirit strong and she is praying about being baptized. So many miracles! :) we pray that the Lord will help her to put the pieces she is missing together as we teach her and as she prays. She is amazing. We had a really neat experience with the Young women this week! Sister Bettridge was introducing herself to all of them at an activity and they made me introduce myself again too. I mentioned that I like to make sock monkeys and everyone got really excited! I showed them pictures, and they were all so excited. The young woman's president asked me if I would direct and activity for the girls to make them and invite their friends to come. This was a really neat experience as we have been thinking really hard about how we can work better with the young woman. Such a neat miracle! God knows all things. :) Yesterday, we felt like we needed to go and visit a member in our ward after church. We had never met this member, but we assumed that she had always come to church and that because the ward was so big that we just hadn't met her yet. Anyway, we visited her and as we talked at the door, we learned that she was actually a less active member. She expressed that she had been struggling a lot. She had served a mission about 10 years previously and said that if it weren't for her mission experiences that she would probably disbelieve in God completely. She had had some really hard experiences in the last couple years and said that she still wanted to believe in God, but that she hadn't felt his love or guidance in her life so a long time. Because of this, she said that she had began to doubt if there was a God who actually loved her and cared about her. It was a tender moment for sister Bettridge and I to speak with this sweet woman. She confided in us and asked us for help in regaining a testimony. I have never seen a person filled with such desire and humility before than this woman looked at this time. We promised her, in the Spirit of the Lord, that she would be able to know once again and feel Gods love for her. She agreed to help us practice the lessons every week with her in Japanese. We are so excited to teach her and learn from her. Seeing the look in this woman's eyes made me want to be a more humble servant of the Lord. She is amazing. It looks like this letter is going to be a little bit shorter than usual, but that's okay! :) I love you all so much. This church is true. God lives and loves us. He is aware of us and He knows our hearts. He answers our prayers and knows our thoughts. Have a wonderful week! Love always,