Hello everyone! I first off want to say I'm sorry to all my friends and family back in Southern California, I hear it's way hot there. It's still humid and hot here but luckily when we have typhoons it gets a little more cooler. Maybe it's because of the crazy 60mph winds.
This week was AMAZING!!! Our investigator Nakasone, who was a refferal from the elders, has a baptismal date now! She's what you call a golden investigator, or "kinjin" in Japanese. She has such a strong desire to follow Christ and wants to be baptized even though we've only met with her twice! She loves the Plan of Salvation because a lot of her family has died recently and she finds a lot of peace and hope knowing that she can see them again. Please pray for her and her baptism.
I also got to junkai (exchanges) with the other sisters in our apartment. I was with a brand new missionary named Sister Evangelista from the Phillipines! She's such and awesome missionary and I love being with new missionary because they have such a fire and such strong faith that helps me to strengthen my faith. You can learn so much from them.
The 4th of July was good! It's obviously not really a thing here in Japan but we celebrated it at our English class and it was way fun. We had fun singing the national anthem and talking about America. I say "we" but it was mostly me haha. Gotta love America.
Our investigator Sarii came to church! Ever since we've been teaching her she hasn't had the desire at all to come to church but this last time, it was Sister Curtis's first time meeting her and she pretended like she didn't know Sarii didn't want to come to church so she was like at the end of the lesson: "See you on Sunday" and Sarii was like "huh?" and she was like "at church right? You have come before right?" and she was like "no" and Sister Curtis acted all surprised and was like "why not???" and Sarii listed off a bunch of excuses but as we talked about it more and explained what we actually did she said "Okay,, I will try coming to church" and she did!!!! WHAT A MIRACLE! It was way cool to see how the gospel is softening her heart and every time we go back she has a stronger desire to know God and Christ.
Anyways, this work is amazing and recently I have been studying a lot about charity as well as God's love. I read in the teachings of Howard W. Hunter where he talks about walking the path of the Savior's charity. It has helped me to look back on my life and to see how I have been showing love to others. He talks about how we can see our devotion to loving God and serving Him by how much we love others and serve others. I'd like to share a little excerpt from it:
"We need to be kinder with one another, more gentle and forgiving. We need to be slower to anger and more prompt to help. We need to extend the hand of friendship and resist the hand of retribution. In short, we need to love one another with the pure love of Christ, with genuine charity and compassion and, if necessary, shared suffering, for that is the way God loves us."
I know that this is true and that charity and love are the center of God's church and the center of God's purpose and plan for us. I know as we try our best to love and serve others we can find blessings in our lives and eventually get closer to Him.
I love you all! 愛しています!