Monday, November 9, 2015

Sharing Feelings

Alex sent a letter to everyone this week and a few pics. I asked him to take some photos of the streets he walks on and things he sees every day. Haha. I guess I got that.

To everyone:
This week was a very emotional week for me, and part of that reason is because of the passing away of a brother here in Furukawa. I never met him, because he had been hospitalized since I got here, but the stories I heard of him really make me think he was a good man. As we proceeded with the funeral services this week, I, for whatever reason, could feel the loss of those who were mourning. It wasn't just an imagined feeling, but was real. As I looked upon those who were crying, I cried with them. I am not trying to say I'm something special, but it was a small insight into the verse found in John 11, specifically verse 35: "Jesus wept." I am nowhere near the magnificence of Him who atoned for us all, yet if I could feel people's pain to such an extent as I did, then how much more can He! Jesus knows all of our pains, personally, and specifically. Turn to Him, because He knows how to make it better.
My ponderizing scripture of the week is Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." I
chose this verse because I have really felt like I need to do exactly
as it directs, and so ponderizing about it will help me remember it
more often.
The kanji of the week is: 気持ち pronounced "key-moe-chi" and means feelings.
                                                  Watching Ephraim's Rescue (a movie)
Monday was spent quickly getting some winter gear for my companion, grocery shopping, and emailing. When we went to email, we found out about the death mentioned above, which happened that morning, I think. Because of that and a party that we said we would help with (and all the flood of thoughts that were going through my head that day) I forgot/ didn't have time for a mass email. I assure you that I am alive and well!
Tuesday, we went and had lunch with an investigator and her husband. Their grandson is a member, and is in a mission as a missionary I met in the MTC. It was a good lunch, but we had to hurry from that over to the church, most of the day was spent doing funeral stuff (the cremation ceremony). It was a privilege to take part in a Japanese funeral, and was an unforgettable experience. We also went to a less active member's house after that, and shared a quick message.
A burned out house that remains standing long after the fire, not an uncommon thing here
Wednesday, after a morning of seminary, was spent trying to meet people who weren't able to meet (one person, we found out later, was really sick), and knocking on doors. Not too much came from that again, unfortunately. We had a few new people at English class though, and I'm really happy about that. We had a good time together, and I like the students here.
Thursday, we tried to meet a potential investigator, but they ended up not having interest. Then, we went to a less active members house, and talked about the parable of the sower. I learned about following the promptings of the Spirit during that meeting, because I got the impression that we should leave, but didn't want to interrupt the person talking. As soon as we got done with that, we got a call from a potential investigator that he wanted us to meet right then at the church, and we were 20 minutes away. The lesson went well, and he said that he wants to keep meeting with us.
Friday was zone training meeting, and studies. Not much else happened that day. It was a good learning experience though.
Our famous couch in the apartment with reclinable arm rests and reclinable back. Pretty cool. 
Saturday we had the funeral service, like the memorial service, I
think. It was a great place to feel the spirit, and a great
opportunity to help comfort others in the time of loss. The rest of
the day was studies and planning.
Sunday we had a good sacrament meeting, and I gave a talk on President Packer's talk from April General Conference of this year: The Plan of Happiness. After church we did studies, walked around in the rain (with umbrellas) trying to find people to talk to, and did a bit more weekly planning.
I would just like to end this email by saying something I have said
many times before: you never know how much influence on others you have. Whether that is brought by a smile, a simple hello, or listening to someone when they're having a hard time. Sometimes you even have influence on others when you are separated by distance or time. So do things that you think are truly good for others. You'll see wonders, even if it's only in the next life when you see them.
Thank you for your love, and sorry about last week! I pray for you all!
Love,
Elder _____
長老

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