Christmas is here!
High lights of the week:
A new missionary leader in the ward! He's coming down from the bishopric after 6 years of being there and apparently he's a total stud missionary,I'm excited to work with him. Our old mission leader was called to be our mission presidents first counselor. Not surprising- this guy is a STUD that is guaranteed to work wonders and excel in whatever he does. Devotes his life to God and is the busiest guy I've ever seen. He just got done putting together and executing the ward mission plan here in Kamisugi, executing the very anticipated Christmas party and now he's getting remarried this month (wife passed away from cancer this summer), and next month he's off to work doing a mission tour! Crazy stuff. Anyway, new bishopric and new ward mission leader, exciting stuff.
We had our much anticipated ward Christmas party on Saturday afternoon. Featuring: "chubby bunny" with kids from the crowd and everyone else watched them shove as many marshmallows in their mouth while trying to pronounce chubby bunny; 12 days of Christmas- taught to everyone by the missionaries; videos and narration of Christ's birth; and last but not least, the young single adult skit in which Elder Robins and Larsen were featured as the missionaries who changed generations of lives. It was great fun and the food afterwards was delectable! I love the people here in Sendai!
Splits yesterday with President Smith
Elder Huston and I got a call in the middle of the week from President Smith and he`s like hey! I wanna go dendou with you guys on Sunday! And so the pressure was on. Because we are aching to find people to teach, we decided to consecrate the time to finding and talking with people at the outdoor mall. We call the outdoor mall the arcade so when I told president smith our plans to go to the arcade he thought we'd be going to play some pinball and what not haha. Those two hours were incredible! President Smith has so much power and boldness he can capture anybody he wants and tell them the message he wants to tell them with power and conviction. It was so cool to be a part of. Found some good contacts for us to visit this upcoming week.
A sister in my district from Carmel, CA is going to be transferring out to a nearby city called Tagajo to replace a sister going home because of health problems. So now our district will be the Zone leaders, us and two Japanese sisters. Sister Ellison is apparently acquaintances with many Danville-ites and we didn't have the chance to talk about it yet so it's sad to say goodbye.
Last night`s miracle
After our time with president smith we watched the Christmas devotional at the church building- it was great and powerful and I loved the theme of the talks. We were in need to teach one more lesson for the week and so we thought and prayed about how we could do it in one hour and we felt prompted to go door to door housing. The day prior, I had seen an American father carry his baby down a street near our apartment and I felt we should try the houses where I saw him walking. We went and door after door of no answer, no answer, no answer. We approached the next door and rang on the camera doorbell- a camera where the person who lives there can see who's at the door and can talk with them through it, classic Japan. Anyway, the lady comes to the door, which is rare. At first, we talked in Japanese but out of nowhere she flips to way good English! I was shocked at how good her pronunciation was and everything so we asked how she learned. She said she's originally from California. Me being a Californian of course I ask where. She said she grew up in Palos Verdes, Los Angeles! Which is where my dad grew up, close to where I was born, a place I'm pretty familiar with. So that was a shock! And then she went on to say she then moved and went to high school in Moraga! I was blown out of the water. This Japanese lady at this random apartment speaks fluent English and is from the same places as I! She is very familiar with Danville and we talked and talked about religion and California and then she introduced her husband, who happened to be the white guy I saw holding the baby! It was incredible how the Lord led us straight to these people. They were incredibly nice and kind and said we could visit again another time. They also said they had been to our church once before and were impressed with how welcoming and friendly everyone was but anyways, definitely a cool experience where we felt God directly lead us and guided us to this family.
Heres an awesome excerpt from a message from Elder Christofferson called "Be at Peace" that made me feel at peace and has an awesome message behind it. Its out of this months` Ensign.
"I pray at this Christmas season that you might have some sense of the Lord’s regard for your offering, some sense of how you stand in His eyes, some sense of the beloved status you occupy as His son or His daughter. And I pray that knowledge of that status may give you a great deal of comfort, reassurance, and confidence that you are approved in His eyes.
Take time to relax, be at peace, and see this little child in your mind. Do not be too concerned or overwhelmed with what is coming in His life or in yours. Instead, take a peaceful moment to contemplate perhaps the most serene moment in the history of the world--when all of heaven rejoiced with the message “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Luke 2:14).
I hope you will take time this Christmas season to sit for a few quiet moments and let the Savior’s Spirit warm you and reassure you of the worthiness of your service, of your offering, of your life. Sit quietly with that little baby and come away spiritually strengthened and better prepared for all that is going to come later. Let that moment be one of rest and refreshing and reassurance and renewal."
Have an amazing week preparing for Christmas and staying focused on the true meaning, love and miss y'all!