Monday, November 11, 2013

And then there was three.....Welcome Coles Shimai

How are ya'll??? Guess what? That Texas t'wang didn't come outta no where! AND THEN THERE WAS 3!!! Yep, you heard me right. 3 blonds riding the streets o

f Okinawa. Due to an emergency transfer, Coles Shimai (from Texas, thats where the t'wang came from) has joined the ranks! It has been so much fun!
Last Monday we went to an ancient castle ruins place. Its crazy to go somewhere and see walls that were built over 500 years ago! We went with a great family in the Military branch! I love these branches!
On Wednesday we taught our investigator Naoko. She loves the happiness that we have and she wants it for herself. She says that the people at our church are kind and loving whereas the people at hers hardly even talk to each other. In Japanese respecting your elders is SOOO huge. It deeply ingrained into their culture. She is nervous to join the church because of her older sister. Her parents have passed away so she looks up to her sister. Even though she believes its true, she can't move forward because of her. She is 40 years old but it is soo important in their culture. Its hard for me to wrap my head around it.
We taught our American investigator, Jackie, for the second time this week. She has been reading and loving the book of Mormon. She calls us her angels because we found her on her birthday and gave her a gift from God, the Book Of Mormon. Even though she was raised Catholic and her father and many family members are Catholic priests, she told us that she wants to "be Mormon". She was interested as we taught her about prophets, dispensations, the apostasy, and especially the restoration. She is moving back to the states to help her daughter who recently had a baby so we are very sad to see her go. She will be gone for like 8 months, but we are going to send all her info to the mission in the states and send other "anglels" to her. As I was pondering that and reading my scriptures I came across a cool scriptures Alma 13:22-23:
"Yea, and the voice of the Lord, by the amouth of angels, doth declare it unto all nations; yea, doth declare it, that they may have glad tidings of great joy; yea, and he doth sound these glad tidings among all his people, yea, even to them that are scattered abroad upon the face of the earth; wherefore they have come unto us. And they are made known unto us in aplain terms, that we may understand, that we cannot err; and this because of our being bwanderers in a strange land; therefore, we are thus highly favored, for we have these glad tidings declared unto us in all parts of our vineyard."
Cool huh?!
So we found an AWESOME investigator last week who is 15 years old. Her name is YUKI!! So cute huh? Anyways, she came to Eikaiwa and wanted extra English practice because she was preparing for an English interview to apply for an American Exchange program. We met with her a few days later and helped her practice English then after we shared a short, simple, sweet message about prayer. We testified how the Lord would bless her and help her learn English. We committed her to pray. Then a few days later at Eikaiwa, the very first thing she said to me was, "I prayed!" I asked her how it went and she said that she prayed half believing and half unsure, but her next day went so well and she was happy. She knew it was an answer to her prayer! We gave her a Book of Mormon and set another time to meet. She has a desire to learn more. There is something really special about her. I already love her. Her face is so familiar to me. I feel like I know her. I know the God is all knowing and sets people in our paths, everything has a purpose. I love Yuki.
First of all Coles Shimai is awesome! She is the same "mission age" as Hawkins Shimai. So technically I am the senior but we just have so much fun together! In her last area, she really focused on working with Less Actives. There are so many! Hundreds! We don't even have all the information. There is SOOO much work that can be done in this area. We decided to put an extra focus on less actives. As we were doing this and going through records we came across a family that was all baptized in 2003, but all soon became inactive. We had the address (which doesn't mean a lot here because things are ridiculous to find) but we went forward with faith. We didnt have a lot of time at the end of the day but we were determined to find this family. Up until this point in my life, I have never felt so guided and directed by the Lord. We conitued down and road that I was sure was even right but we kept moving then before I knew it I felt I should turn. We turned into a tiny neighborhood and parked our bikes. None of the houses were labeled so we knocked on someones door. It was a nice man and he told us his houses number! It was only a few off from the one we were searching for!! MIRACLE!!! We told if he knew the family and he said he think he knew and told us where. We had to knock on a few doors and almost gave us hope, but.............we knocked on door that was kind of hidden and guess what!!!!!!!! WE FOUND THEM!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WE FOUND THE SAKAJIMA family!! We didn't want to scare them so we just talked to them trying to get to know them.
I know the Lord guides us. We prayed to be instruments in the hands of the Lord that day and He did. He is involved in the details of our lives. He loves his children and He is sending us to find His lost sheep. I testify that as we pray for opportunities to serve, and ACT, we will feel God's love more in our lives. This church is true!!! I love Okinawa! I am grateful to be serving here! 

I love you and I am grateful for your prayers!

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