Week 2? It's going so fast! Ahhhhh!!!
|Ward Missionary Pictures|
I learned an important lesson that day. Don't get into debt.
I mean we had money, we weren't in debt, but when we got reimbursements over the next two days it was a pain to have to divide up what was actually personal money and what was emergency fund money. Just don't get in debt. Nothing good comes from it. Debt is bad. Even if you do it so that you can have plates and lights in your apartment. Don't do it. ^^
So that was our practical lesson learned from the week. :)
|Natsu Masuri (Summer Festival)|
Later that same day, we decided to do some housing and we saw so many little miracles! We were able to give away quite a few pamphlets and have face to face conversations with many people. Usually people just talk to us through the intercom doorbell and don't actually come out, so it was great to talk to people in person. One dad that we talked to kept straightening up in surprise whenever we mentioned Jesus Christ. It was pretty funny. It felt really productive though so that was good.
One amazing miracle that we saw this week though was that we met this woman on the street who actually knew a little bit about the church. She remembered going there when she was really young and playing with the missionaries while her parents took the lessons. As we talked to her, I just saw so much light and potential. She lives in the Tokyo South Mission, so we could only give her a flyer and hope that she finds the missionaries, but I really really hope she does. I really felt like she was prepared for the gospel. I hope that she takes the chance to find the missionaries and open her heart to their message.
Another miracle happened on Sunday. In between the Japanese church meetings and the Portuguese church meetings we had 2 hours stuffed with lessons and meetings and talking to members. We hadn't planned for lunch so we were starving and Sister Honda was so hungry that she started searching through our fruit basket for food. Well we had one last meeting with the Young Women President and when we walked in, they were having a shoukujikai (potluck party) and they started giving us tons of food. It was such a miracle. I was so grateful.
Also, we had a dinner appointment at some Brazilian members' house and I got to eat Brazilian beans and rice and salgados (fried dough filled with meat)!!! Then today at our Summer Festival they had Guarana (Brazilian soda) and I almost cried. I was so happy!
|Putting furniture together (cabinet took 2 hours)|
I had many expectations when I came to Ushiku. I expected to work hard, but I also expected that Heavenly Father would have everything set up for us an that this would be just like any other area, with many investigators already and waiting for us. That was not the case. It is definitely a challenge to not be finding anyone. It's hard to feel like you aren't being successful, that your day may not have been effective because you didn't find anyone. It's hard to see the progress being made and feel proud of everything when there aren't many tangible fruits of your labor.
However, that being said, I think I came with a lot of pride. I thought that I could do this all on my own because I knew just a sliver of what Ushiku was like. Truthfully, I don't know much. Sister Honda and I are both just figuring these things out together. Of course there are going to be mistakes. Of course it's going to feel like we aren't being effective, it is because we aren't. We don't know enough to be effective yet. Heavenly Father doesn't expect us to know enough to be effective.
This past week had its rough patches, but I think that those challenges were necessary to help us to learn about the area and find the resources to be more effective. After that rough day at the college, we called some of the past Elders who had served in Ushiku and worked at the college and we received a lot of valuable information. Would we have done that if we hadn't had a subpar day? Trials are truly there for a reason. Heavenly Father knows exactly how to teach and help us.
One thing I recently learned about the way Jesus Christ taught was that he sometimes let people make mistakes so that they could learn for themselves. This is something I have a really really hard time with. All my life, I've known a lot of things, useful things, random things, important things, things other people don't normally know. I have always struggled with wanting to just tell people what to do and why they should do it. But that isn't how Christ taught. He let people make mistakes and from those mistakes, they were able to learn so much more. It is something I have been trying to work on not just in teaching investigators, but also in the way I try to teach others around me. Most importantly, I'm trying to apply it to myself. Making mistakes isn't a sign of failure, it is a sign of progress. If we didn't make mistakes, we wouldn't be using our agency to make choices and thus would not be fully embracing our Heavenly Father's plan for us. So embrace the mistakes!!!!!
I really hope you all have an amazing week! Love you all!