Heavenly Father must trust me, and he must trust me a lot, because this next transfer, I will be training a brand new missionary straight from the MTC (missionary training center). Welch Kaichou (President) must trust me too. Although I have no idea how to be a trainer, and I feel completely inadequate, I know that Heavenly Father will help me every step of the way.
This week has been so packed, and we have been so incredibly busy! I hope my trainee is ready to get to work! We have been teaching anywhere from 2-3 lessons almost everyday. This week we taught 11 lessons. We also had a kokan (exchange) with the STLs (sister training leaders) this week, and we had Zone Conference (members were invited to come, which was so cool!)! It has been wonderful though, and although it is hard sometimes, I love that we aren't just teaching lots of lessons, but we are teaching Heavenly Father's children, and that itself is the best. This week we had so many lessons where our investigators finally just understood. Something that they had been struggling with finally clicked. Those are some of my favorite moments while teaching. We have been working really hard to understand the needs of our investigators and to teach by the spirit. This week I had a couple of really cool experiences where I felt the spirit teaching through me. I wish I could share them all with you. Besides the fact that I can't remember all of them right now (don't worry, I have been writing everything in my journal), it would take hours and hours to tell you about all of the cool experiences and stories, and things that I am learning.
I do want to share one experience with you though. Recently I have been focusing on charity, the pure love of Christ. As a mission, we have been learning a lot about charity recently, from our leaders, our mission president, and from some of the area general authorities (leaders of the church here in Asia). I have been thinking a lot about charity, and although I feel like I have some charity, I realized that there are areas in my life, and in my dendo (missionary work) where charity is lacking. Especially when it comes to talking to people. I don't have a really hard time loving the members or our investigators, but when it comes to random people on the street. After thinking about it, I realized the problem. If I think of Heavenly Father's children as random people on the street, it is almost always difficult for me to get up the courage to talk to them. When I stop and think about it, and see them as children of our Heavenly Father, it makes it much easier to Open my Mouth and speak. Although finding is one of the parts of missionary work that I struggle with the most, it has progressively gotten easier, and some days I even have enough courage to stop people while we are biking (although so far that has only happened once). Missionary work is hard, and without charity it is almost impossible. Without charity, we have nothing. "Wherefore, my beloved brethren, if ye have not charity, ye are nothing, for charity never faileth. . . . Charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever." (Moroni 7:46-47) Charity is so important. It doesn't matter how perfect your Japanese is, or how good you are at talking to people, or how wonderful of a teacher you are, if you don't have charity for the people, if you don't truly love the people, then it is impossible to effectively do the work of the Lord, and truly bring others unto Christ. I am so grateful for my Savior, and for all that He has done for me. One of my favorite parts of being on a mission, and reading the Book of Mormon, is how much I have learned about my Savior. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior, and Redeemer. He knows us, and He loves us. I know that through Him, and His atonement, we can do all things. "Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever." (Alma 26:12)
I love you all, and I am so grateful for all of your love and support. You are all incredible, and I am grateful for the influence you have each had on my life.
Ps... I guess I should explain the faith, trucks, and pixie dust. It is just one of those things that you end up saying when you don't speak English anymore. :)
1. In Japan, all of the school children ride the trains and go to school all by their selves. Even when they are only four years old... Japan is SO safe. This is one of the little signs on the train platform. It says, "Elementary students, please wait here for the train."
2. Happy birthday present from one of our investigators. She is so sweet!
3-5. One time we decided to do a gyoza challenge, and each eat 60 gyoza... it was a bad idea. I only ate 34 before I felt like dying...
6. Inori kata no sanduwichi (Prayer sandwhich) - we used this to teach one of our investigators about prayer, but mostly to entertain her 2 year old son. It was a good idea. :)
7-8. I'm training!