Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Best Eighteen Months

Konnichiwa Kazoku!

This week has been fun and crazy. We had some really fun member
dinners and stuff. On Monday night we went to the Utashima family's
house and they had us all make our own sushi. They had seaweed wraps
and rice and fish and it was really good! They were really cute. I
haven't eaten sushi like that but it was really good. They are so
amazing. They love the temple and they love missionary work. They have
been such good examples to us. I love them!

We went up to Saijo for junkais this week. I was able to junkai with
Sister Johnson. She was so kind! She was so bright and happy and I
loved it. It was kind of a fun break from everything. I got to see
some of my old investigators and we had a good day. I have loved being
able to go back and see my old area. It's been so much fun. I love
Saijo, and I love Hatsukaichi!

We heard that America is pulling ahead in the Olympics! It sounds like
so much fun. I bet it has been fun to watch. Go America! We have been
hearing a lot about Trump San and Clinton San too hahaha :)

Hayashi Shimai took us out to Chinese and it was delicious. She was
really cute. When she said bye to me she got kind of emotional and she
was just so kind. She has been really amazing. We actually saw a
miracle because of her. She gave us a referral at the beginning of
last transfer and we COULD NOT find it. But we finally found her, and
we have visited like five times. The other night we decided to try
just once more and she was home! We taught the referral a lesson right
there when we met her and she is so awesome! So we are very grateful
for Hayashi Shimai. She has been so sweet and kind to me. And always
wants to Dendo so much!

We have two new investigators! They both wanted to do this program
where we teach a small English lesson then share a gospel message.
They both were so awesome and we extended a baptismal invite to both
of them. We were just so happy. I love when we get new investigators!

We had a basketball activity this week. We invited recent converts and
members and investigators. It wasn't the best turn out but it was a
lot of fun and it was a nice change of pace. We sometimes need
activities to help us keep going. It was fun though. That was a nice
part of our week.

We have been eating ALL of the good food! We have made so much cookie
dough and pancakes and eating all of the best Japanese foods. We met
our investigator yesterday and ate Okonomiyaki and it was delicious. I
love Japanese food!

This week has just been really good. We are all anxious for our next
transfer. The apartment will be becoming a trio and Vogelsberg Shimai
and Brown Shimai will be companions and have another sister come up.
They will be merging the areas. It is so fun and they are really
excited. I am excited for them to see miracles here together.

We were able to participate in the Sapporo Temple Dedication. It was
so very special. I love the Japanese people. I felt so much pure joy
that they now have another temple to use and to feel the spirit of the
Lord. It is so beautiful. The Sapporo Temple is beautiful from what I
have seen. Elder Nelson was the one who came to Japan for it. It was
really special. Everyone was just so happy. How neat is it that I was
able to participate in that right at the end? It will always be a
special memory for me. I love the temple and I can't wait to be able
to attend more frequently. The blessings of the temple are real.

I love this work. I love being a missionary. I love feeling like I am
giving my all to the Lord every day. I love Japan. I love the Japanese
people. I love every minute I have had to spend here serving these
people, and being served by them. I love this gospel. It is true! The
work will always move forward because it is the will of the Lord.
Christ is our Savior! There is so much happiness for us in the gospel.
It is amazing. Truly amazing. It has changed me. This has truly been
the hardest, most humbling, spiritually filled eighteen months of my
life. I wouldn't every take this back. This part of my life is sacred
to me now.

I love my family! I am so excited to see you soon. Have a good week!

I love you! Love, Raines Shimai

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