Sunday, August 30, 2015

08/31/2015 | Miricle days, and Transfers


Hey everyone. It's been a week hasn't it. How've you all been doing?
I've been doing pretty good myself. I'm a little sad this transfer has already gone by so fricken fast. Why is it that when I get a good companion time flies by, and it doesn't feel like I get to do enough.

Anyway, I'd like to tell you about a miracle this week. So we have an investigator named Sawada san, and he's really cool. He's an older guy, that lives by himself, and he really likes the missionaries, and our message. He's got a lot of medical issues though, and so we've been going to great lengths to try to help him to progress. We even got him a CD player so he could listen to the Book of Mormon, since he is not physically capable to read it. So we went over to his house,
and taught him the Plan of Salvation, using a cute little Draemon set of visual aids. Draemon is a very popular kids show out here, and he loved it. Anyway we taught him about it, and he liked it all. Apparently he had already heard of it before however, but it was a good review. So after that we proceeded to talk with him about baptism. He is willing, and wouldn't mind getting baptized, but he has a lot of physical problems, and a surgery coming up that keeps him from being able to be baptized until next year. Well there isn't a lot that we can do about it, we've been thinking about it lately, but that wasn't the miracle. The miracle was that we came out of that lesson, I wouldn't say discouraged, because it was a good lesson, but the fact that one of our stronger investigators couldn't get baptized was a little bumming. So coming out of his apartment, and going down the stairs to our bikes, we were standing there and this girl on her bike stops and asks, "are you Goddard san?" (Elder Goddard used to be in this area. He was my old companion, Elder Thompson's, trainer) We of course told her we weren't, but that we were his "replacements" and then proceeded to start talking with her some more. She didn't have a lot of interest in the Gospel, but she had a lot of interest in English. So we shared with her the possibility of doing this program called the Free Family English Program with her. Basically what we do it meet up, usually at their house, and we teach them an English lesson for 30 minutes, and then our message for 30 minutes. She was thrilled to try that, so last Friday we went to her house, got to meet her boyfriend, and her cats, and started up the program. The Gospel Lesson went a little longer than 30 minutes, but her English was very good, and she listened to our message, committed to read the book of Mormon, and even prayed for us at the very end. She seems like somebody that will take us seriously, and actually strive to learn in both English and the gospel. I hope she progresses a lot. Probably going to pass her to the sisters, just because she is female, but I think she is very prepared, and could see her getting baptized here soon. #miraclemessage

So this week is transfers already. I have literally no idea what is going to happen. My guess is that I'm out of Shinkotoni though. There's enough missionaries coming in that it looks like Elder Birch is going to go Trainer, but once again I don't know. All I do know is that it is all run off of actual revelation, and it's no coincidence what happens, or where I go. So I'm excited for it, and I will let you all know how it goes. The other thing that comes up this week is my year mark. So with that coming up, I'm still just being mind blown by how fast time moves on a mission. But with it coming up I would like to say thank you to all of my loyal fans that have kept up with this whole past year, and I'm looking forward to one more. I love you all so much, and appreciate all of the prayers that have been said in my behalf. I can feel them, and I know they are helping. Well I love you all, and I want you to all know of the testimony I have of this work. This past year has been great. I've had ups and I've had downs. I've had doubts, and I've had testimony builders, but through it all, how grateful I am that I was put on this earth at the time that I was with the people that I was put with. I know that you have all had an impact in my life at some point, and I know that there was a reason I was put where I was. I once again thank you all, and just want you all to know that I know this work is true. I know that Jesus Christ lives, and he is our savior. Remember that through all rough times, he has experienced all, and he loves us eternally. He knows what we go through. Try asking him about it sometime ;)
Well that's my piece for this week. Go give someone a hug this week, and make em smile.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

08/23/2015 | Wow.... Fast..... 早いね…


So... This transfer has gone by really, really fast... We're already on our last full week together... woah that went really fast. I have no idea what's going to happen this transfer literally anything could

Well we had a pretty good week. We got to have a wonderful Zone conference from President Nakatsuka, in which he pointed out quite a few interesting things. We focused this time around on 3 things. Love, Becoming a consecrated missionary, and Teaching the Japanese people. What if I told you, that Japanese comes all the way from Adam. Would you believe me? No? Well here I'll give you an example. Here is a Kanji character.
. This character means "to create". Well here is the
interesting part. Kanji is made up of Radicals, which are basically just other kanji. So this one is made up of
土、口、and . Well means dirt, or dust. means mouth, or (an older definition) person. and 辶 means walk. Well dust, walking, person, "to create" hmm...... interesting. How about this one. . This one means "Forbidden" well here are the parts. 木、木、示。木-Tree, -(old definition) God. 2 Trees, and God, "Forbidden" Just let that stew around in your minds for a minute, and tell me Japan isn't actually a Christian country.

Anyway there are a lot of other things I could talk about having to do with this. There's lots of evidences of things like that, and I can tell you about them all at another time. I'd actually like to share with you something from my studies this week. So I told you I had started studying the Book of Mormon in Japanese. Well I made if to 2 Nephi Chapter 4. Now if you know your 2 Nephi you'll know that this is the Psalm of Nephi spot. This is where he talks about how awful he is, and how good God is, and all that. Well it's also where we find this scripture in verse 28 "Awake, my soul! No longer droop in sin. Rejoice, O my heart, and give place no more for the enemy of my soul." Well in the Japanese version it replaces the word "soul" with "which means spirit. This is because there isn't a good translation of the word "soul" in Japanese. But it got me thinking. Make your Spirit stop falling asleep or "drooping into sin" or in other words wake it up. If your spirit is asleep, then the "natural man" (Mosiah 3:19will take over, and them sin occurs. Well on the opposite, I'd your spirit isn't asleep, then the spirit is 10 times stronger than the natural man, so it will win. Therefore "WAKE UP YOUR SPIRIT" Now you might ask, how do you do that? Well in order to invite "The Spirit" or "The Holy Ghost" which gift you were given at baptism, there's several things we can do. Several General Authorities have mentioned this umpteenth hundred times, but try Singing a favorite hymn,
or quoting a favorite scripture, or anything else that you have found that invites the spirit. That is how you wake up your own personal spirit, and that is how you "Put off the natural man" that is in you.

This is the truth. 
There is so much good stuff in The Book of Mormon, Logically it has to be true. But logic aside, I do have a testimony of it's truthfulness. It is the Word of God. You can all know for yourselves as well. Read, Ponder, and Ask. Or in the words of the Primary Hymn, "Search, Ponder, and PrayJust try it out this week. Even if you already have. I promise you'll have a good experience (that's a missionary promise. That means it's Gods promise. That means it'll be kept 😉)

Well I think that's my piece this week. Love you all.
Elder Eliot

Sunday, August 16, 2015

08/16/2015 | Weddings, Birthdays, Emergency Transfers

Yes they can be silly!

Well, this was not a normal week. This week was full of adventures.

First thing I'd like to mention, is back when I was a bean. I don't know of you remember the emails back from that time, but I'm pretty sure I talked about just how nice Japanese people are. Well I've found that to not be true. This last Wednesday, we were on splits with the Zone Leaders, so I got to go on my first split where I was effectively Senior. I got to go with Elder Kashiwa who is currently on his 4th Transfer, so that was fun. But while we were on splits, we visited a less active member, and he seemed all smiles, and then Kashiwa 長老 asked him "元気ですか" Which translates essentially to "How are you" and he flipped. If I were to give a rough translation, this is what he said. "Are you kidding me? With the way the weather has been lately, why on earth would you ask me how I'm doing? What are you even thinking. Obviously you don't have a brain. Go home right now (帰ってくれ) I'm fed up with you (ぼくはやだ~)" (now just imagine him almost yelling, and probably swearing had it been in English, and you know what it was like) He was quite rude, and kind of set our mood for that day. The rest of that day was kinda まま… but meh. I guess those days happen. 

But we did have a very fun time on Saturday. An old member of Shinkotoni, who is currently living in Tokyo, got married, and wanted to come back so that all her old friends from this area could celebrate her reception party with her. She also wanted to try to use it as an opportunity to introduce everyone to the church, so she decided to have the reception at the church, and we set it all up nice and fancy so that when people came in, we could give them a tour of the church, and explain what we believe and stuff like that. Then we sang "I am a Child of God" for part of it, and mingled with everyone the rest of the time. It turned out to be really good, and she had a really good message to show everyone about families. Here's a link to the video if you'd like to check it out. Families Can Be Together Forever. In watching it, and seeing what a cute couple they were, it was reaffirmed to me that I do want to live with my family forever. #Loveyouall<3
It was a very fun experiences, and we got to make a few new friends.

And then finally, Yesterday (Sunday) Was my dear beloved companion, Elder Birch's Birthday. He turned 20 which means now in Japan he is officially an Adult! Now he can buy Sake, and Cigarettes, and Beer... PARTY!!!!!!!!!!!! Now he's rolling his eyes at me though, so we probably won't be doing that anytime soon... Meh oh well. #keepthecommandments #missionaryhashtags
So for that, we went to our favorite members house, and had wonderful dinner. They were a ton of fun to play with, and we had a blast. But now he isn't a teenager anymore. He's gotten all mature and stuff... Meh I can live with it.

Anyway... It was a good week. Hope everyone else is doing well, and had a good week. 
Remember to Love everyone. It's a commandment. Do it.

See you all next week.


Oh whoops forgot about the transfer. So there was a missionary, that had a rather bad bike accident, and has to go home to get surgery, so Sister Wallwork, from our district is transferring in to her old area. And then Sister Mori is coming up from Hakodate to be with Sister Barr, which makes Sister Barr Senpai now. 

A prayer

Nice hike

Want to sleep on this? The Floor! Kelson does!

We have a message for you! 

Before the baptism

Good-bye to mission parents

P-day activity

Church activity

Elder Birch, Kelson's new companion

More fun

Not sure, if they were driving, I'd get it!

Hmmm. Rice

Lot's of smiles, and peace!

Sunday, August 9, 2015

08/09/2015 | Hmm... Another Week


This week was pretty.... normal again. I know everyone is probably sick and tired of hearing it, but there really just isn't anything HUGE happening. We had a really fun activity with 2 zones (groups of missionaries) at Atsubetsu on Monday. Everyone came and just brought random props from their
apartments, and we separated into groups and had to make a skit, and a rap. It was quite entertaining. The rest of the days we just did 伝道.  Didn't have exploding success, but we did meet some people we'll get to meet again this week, so maybe I'll get something to talk about more next week.

I will say though, sometimes listening to the small promptings of the spirit is good. Yesterday, we got back from Dinner with some members, and my head was splitting. My head hasn't hurt that much since the week before we pit on Peter Pan. It was bad, but we got back and I took medicine, but once again, normally it doesn't kick in till about an hour later, so to keep it from hurting, I laid down on my bed with a pillow on my face, and it still hurt. Alot. And I had the thought to try using a rice bag that you heat up and use for back pain. But I didn't want to get up, so I ignored it, but I thought about it again, and then my beloved companion mentioned it as well. So I fought the pain, and got up and heated it up, and used it. My headache was gone within 4 min. 癒しだった。Sometimes, we get those small promptings. If I had continued to have a headache, I'm sure life would've gone on normally, but Heavenly Father, loves me, and doesn't want me to feel pain. So he helped me, but it was still my choice. Look at that I just through 3 principles into one thought. God really does love us and want to help us, but we have to give him our heart. And then he will lead us where we should go.

To this I testify
have a wonderful week.
Elder Eliot

Monday, August 3, 2015

07/26/2015 | Transfers (again)


Huh. Funny I think that was the name of my last email...

Sorry I'm a little later at sending this today. We had a fun district
activity today, so... Yeah. どうぞ赦してください。So I know, you are all very
anxious to hear about transfers, and where I went, but I can't tell
you that yet :)

Ok I'm just kidding I'll tell you. After a fun transfer with Elder
Fujisaka, he had transferred. He headed out to Shiroishi with an old
companion of his, and district member of mine Elder Call. Neither of
them have been there before, and they have been having fun it seems...

Anyway, the rest of my district, and then some other familiar names
real quick. Elder Morgan, one of my Favorite AP's, has gone home :(
but a new AP has taken his place. His name is Elder Horne!!! He is
Elder Stevens's (who is my douki (came at the same time) Trainer. He's
pretty cool. Let's see who else... Elder Stevens, and Elder Hishii
(the two in the Honbu) both stayed, and elder Stevens, became the new
recorder as well as financial secretary. Elder Birch transferred, but
I won't say where. Sister Barr stayed in Shinkotoni, so we'll be
together for another transfer, and sister Naganuma went to Atsubetsu
to open the area for Sisters. Sister Barrs new companion is sister
Wallwork, who I knew from the MTC. She is from Australia, so I've got
a little bit of Elder Rostedt back in my life. Speaking of Elder
Rostedt, he went back to Higashi!!! That's his bean area (the first
area he had been too) isn't that great!! Elder Roylance. Let's talk
about him. He went out to Otofuke, with my old Beloved companion,
Elder Thompson!!! Those two are going to have sooooo much fun
together. Hmm who else... How about Elder Francis. He's still in
Asahikawa as a Zone Leader, and he goes home this transfer :'( How
bout my ZL's. Last Transfer, was Elder Fa'alafua, and Elder Cragun.
Elder Cragun had to go home, but Elder Fa'alafua is still my zone
leader. My other zone leader, is Elder Day! But get this... They
aren't companions!! What the crap. Yeah it'll be weird. 後は…誰かな… I
think that about sums it up. if you have questions about anybody else,
feel free to ask :) Oh wait me? you want to know about me? Ok I'll
tell you. So, I stayed in Shinkotoni. Not leaving yet. And my new
companion will be..................(this is the drum
BIRCH!!!!!! Yay!!!! Yup my old district member all the way from
Hawaii. He is one transfer above me, and is DL. So I am with the DL
again. This is were it gets crazy, because from now on, there are a
lot of missionaries coming in, so I am most likely to go Senior pretty
soon.... wow that scary, I could even go trainer... Anyway nightmares
aside, thats this new transfer. I'm way excited. Elder Birch is a hard
worker. We've already taught the message of the restoration twice,
completely at random, and the best part is, we've only done finding

 The rest of this week was pretty good. We got to do some people
watching on Monday, because we didn't really have anything else to do
(this was still with Elder Fujisaka) and while doing so, in a store,
we met these two girls, that spoke perfect english. They had both done
exchange programs, one in Seattle Washington, and one in Australia.
They were quite friendly, and very good at english. The one spoke more
than the other, but that was because the other, was looking shocked as
though she were thinking "Oh my gosh, these cute gaijin are actually
talking to us!!" kind of a thing. We tend to get that alot. Lol! Then
on Wednesday we went to the Temple!!! I'm so sorry though, all the
pictures are in my camera, and Sister Naganuma camera, and I can't get
them out yet, but I will get them out ASAP!! It was beautiful. The
detail is just so exquisite, and perfect, it was quite a sight. I
can't wait to get to attend a temple again. it's already been so long.
Everybody that has the ability. Go to a temple this week, and think of
me. Maybe I'll feel something, I dont know. Then on Thursday, we had
transfer day. Keep in mind that up until now I was still with Elder
Fujisaka. Now I'm with Elder Birch. Friday, we were working at Honbu.
Elder Birch is currently the only missionary in the mission right now
with a liscence, so he needed to take Elder Horne, and Elder Stevens
to the Driving place. So I got to hang out with the other AP elder
Tokuzawa, and get to say hi to all of the families coming to pic up
their missionaries. It was a good day. Me and Elder Tokuzawa had a
couple good talks. He is a way good Leader, and an amazing missionary.
On Saturday, we were once again helping Honbu. So because Atsubetsu
Sisters are opening, we had to get a new apartment for them. So we
went and helped set it up. Me and Elder Hishii hung out at the
apartment, setting stuff up while Elder Birch, and Elder Stevens took
stuff from the old Teine Apt. to being to this one. So that was fun.
Then Sunday was church. Today, Elder Birch set up a fun District
activity for us. We all worked together and made some yummy cookies,
and played with the dough, and really just had a ton of fun making
them, and then we played Jinroh. And now here we are back to today.
Wow boy I talk alot. I'm really thirsty now.

Well hope everyone is 元気!
Have a good safe week, and pray for us to stop sweating so much. It's
soooooo HOT here. and humid too...
Somebody eat a Pringle this week please. Don't ask questions, just do it.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

08/02/2015 | Just a Quick One


Great baptism

No difference at all!?
Just a quick one this week.

I want to tell you about how something is really awesome. And it was not this English.

So the guy that was baptized last month, Matsunogo Yuuki, is going on a mission for the church. How awesome is that! He is a little tight on money, so he's planning to head out in about 2 years, but he's planning, and preparing. He went with us twice this week to do missionary stuff. On Tuesday, we did a role play lesson with him, and he bore a very powerful testimony of the Book of Mormon. After which, and Friday, we went housing with him. In both aspects, he was a little nervous, and you could tell, but he was willing to do so, and that is a way good trait. He is so much fun.

Other than that, the rest of this week was normal. Nothing insanely different to report on. My body is doing good, and I'm healthy. Everyone keep a prayer out for my mom please. She has broken her foot, and is going to take some time to recover. Thanks much.

Quick spiritual thought. This week, I started reading the Book of Mormon again, but this time I am reading it in my mission language. It's pretty difficult, because it's not only a different language, but
a different alphabet. But I am getting more out of it, because I have to go slow, and look words up every once in a while. But I'm not even through 1 Nephi, and already I can feel the truthfulness of it. Just because I can't understand everything, but it's still very good. If you can I challenge you to read the scriptures in a language other than your native tongue. If not just read them anyway.

Elder Eliot