Monday, November 26, 2018

๐ŸŽ„*Aggressively Plays Christmas Music at Full Volume*๐ŸŽ„

Konnichiwa minasan! 

This week has sure been busy despite the amount of things that happened being rather few and far between. On top of zone conference and the family history fair we've been all over the place, but that's okay because it was fun.

We helped out Naganuma Shimai this week with one of her PathwayConnect assignments because I can do math and it was really great actually. She helped us translate Pilling Shimai's I'm a Missionary page as well so that was really helpful. And then she was the literal nicest person in the world and not only drove us to our Eikaiwa class in Sanda, but she also took us out to eat yakiniku and it was very delicious. We were very happy campers. And what was even better was that we got to take great advantage of the Christmas season at Eikaiwa and teach the two little girls about Jesus Christ and the true meaning of Christmas. We made an anagram of Christmas with Jesus' different titles. 

Son of God 

It was awesome. They responded super well actually it was awesome. Last week the younger one accidentally smashed her finger in the fold up chair, causing a great many tears and pain, as would be expected. So when we told her that Jesus went through that same experience she had so He could comfort her, she was really surprised and touched. It was amazing to watch her expression. Our plan is to teach them something new about Christmas every week until Christmas. We're very excited. 

 The family history fair was honestly one of the highlights of the week. Just surrounding yourself with the Spirit of Elijah and everyone's testimonies of this great work is one of the best feelings. That and Sister Smoot's cookies. I find that I mostly just want to engage in family history like all day every day, though I know this isn't very practical haha. It boggles my mind when people will be like "mah it's not that important and it's too time consuming" like ??????????? What could be???? more important?????? than strengthening your family???????????? I do not understand. I bet lots of people's ancestors are very salty and frustrated up there in the spirit world. Goodness gracious.

And then get this: we had a lesson with Nakamura-san on Saturday and it went brilliantly! We got him to set a baptismal date to work towards and found out a bunch of his concerns. He's starting to recognize the hand of God in his life and we're so proud of him. Now we just have to work on the whole Word of Wisdom thing.... Mah it is what it is we'll see what God has in store.

Sunday was also really great and we had an awesome lesson with Natsuki chan. Wilkin Kyoudai dousekied for us and Kazuki showed us all a really great video about the atonement. We had a really wonderful discussion about the Savior and how he is our Mediator and I think Natsuki understands the importance of Jesus Christ much better now. We talked about baptism and invited her to set a date, but she's not ready for it yet. It's not the right timing for her. Her mom is against her getting baptized for one thing, but our feeling is that she needs to really gain a strong desire to be baptized and then the problem with her mom will go away as a result of that.

All in all, a good week. Things are moving if a little slowly, but Christmas is soon and that's what really matters. ๐ŸŽ„๐ŸŽ„๐ŸŽ„

ๆ„›ใ—ใฆใ„ใพใ™! ๐ŸŽ…๐Ÿป☃️๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ’•
Sherwood ๅง‰ๅฆน

19ๆญณ 20ๆญณ

1.) ice cream in November what up
2.) yakiniku #blessed

Monday, November 19, 2018

Thanks Hollingworth ้•ท่€ Your Musical Efforts Have Brought About Miracles

Konnichiwa minasan! 

This week originally had exactly zero appointments, but them ended up being crazy full of all sorts of last minute appointments and stuff. I'm still not entirely sure what happened, but it's fine. 

We had a lesson with the Relief Society president's son, Issei on Monday. He's 12 and loves chemistry so we made a baking soda volcano with him and turned it into a really solid tatoe about faith and how it's a principle of action and power, of trying the word and seeing if it has any merit. It was really fun and also cute. His mom was really happy about the lesson and he got all ureshii about trying to be more faithful. We extended the Jesus Christ challenge to them as a family. It was way good.

On Tuesday, we visited Nakamura-San and gave him a prayer rock to help him remember to pray. We told him we would pray together to help him be more genki cos his hips really hurt and he put the rock by his CD player that he uses every day so he would remember. It was really nice having a nice simple lesson for once instead of the all over the place messes it's been lately with dousekis that have been too strong.

Thursday we got to spend time with Jenny and talked a lot about truth and how she's come to know what she knows now. She said she Googled the Church (gotta love the Google. Giving people problems and random annoying deep doctrinal questions about the Church since day 1) and as a result had a number of questions about the godhead and eternal families. I must confess I am not used to having to deal with such kinds of questions and thus was rather stressed. But hey it ended up working out and long story short she's down to learn more, but is currently very hesitant about baptism, though she is open to the possibility that the church is true, which is in and of itself a miracle I don't see very often.

Friday was full of lovely district meetings and friendship, as well as a really solid chunk of visiting less-actives with the Ooshimas. It was way cool actually because this one lady Okamoto Shimai basically committed to coming back to church thanks to the Ooshimas being total rock stars and not letting her use a bunch of the typical excuses. It was great. We also had a lovely dinner appointment with the Fujikawas and not only did we get to talk about the gospel, we also got to discover that Japanese Settlers of Catan does exist, and there were many hilarious quotes by the six year old of the family. Highlights include

Me: "Kou chan where do you want to go on your mission?"
Kou chan: "Disneyland. Or USJ"

Hina: "่‹ฑ่ชžใงใ‚ฆใ‚ตใ‚ฎใฏไฝ•?" (What's 'rabbit' in English?) 
Kou chan: "Carrot!"

Then there was volunteering at the Kobe Marathon on Saturday and that was super fun. My voice kinda hurts from asking like a thousand people about their lives as I handed them their race numbers, but that's okay because we got a couple solid contacts out of it. Everyone was very happy that we tried so hard to talk to everyone and take interest in them. It was way great. And then the Tokunous fed us ramen and it was delicious. All in all a way good day.

Sunday was truly the day of miracles though. Natsuki came to church and we practiced English with her by reading Book of Mormon Stories with her. We roped a couple of the youth into it too. It was way fun. And then after church we had Music Night, which four of our investigators came to! Even Ooyama-san who we were sure was too busy to make it showed up! It was awesome! (@Hollingworth้•ท่€: eternal ๆ„Ÿ่ฌ man your song made this all possible) She told us about how her daughter just got baptized and she got to go to the service. The Lord be willing, I think she might be able to get baptized by the end of the year. But wait! There's more! When we went to go pick up Nakamura san, he was super genki! Not a single complaint about his hips, and when we asked him about his prayers that week, he said he saw a miracle! Get this: he loves music and listens to his CD player every day. But then randomly it stopped working and he couldn't get it to work. At that moment, he saw the little prayer rock we had given him and he decided to pray that his CD player would work. AND THEN AFTER HE PRAYED IT STARTED WORKING! He totally recognized that God helped him and it took quite a lot of self control for me to not scream very loudly and joyfully. I think he might actually start really progressing finally! Hallelujah! The Lord loves us. It's been a good week. 

All the best!,
Sherwood ๅง‰ๅฆน

19ๆญณ 20ๆญณ

1.) the prettiest red tree
2.) we found tobacco Popeye and Hatchett ้•ท่€ almost died laughing. His face in this photo is my favorite
3-6.) hiking with Suenaga-san today
7.) baby's first ramen shop

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Well Now We Know Joseph Smith Was Def Inspired Because This Was Exhausting

Konnichiwa minasan!

We've been having a lovely week of things falling through left and right but this is fine. We've also learned the important lesson of telling your dousekis to please not talk about the intricate details of celestialized Earth when attempting to teach someone who Joseph Smith is. Furthermore, there are certain individuals who like to knock on Suenaga-san's door and tell him all about the points of angry apostate literature and cause him to create question marks above his head. It's fine. I'm not salty. I'm just gonna change up the voice of my email to make myself feel better about life. 

Nevertheless, it came to pass that the missionaries were blessed with the exceedingly great and tender mercies of the Lord throughout their ministry amongst the people of Kitarokko, and an account of their proceedings shall be given hereafter. 

And it came to pass that an appointment was decided upon with Nakamura-san, to visit with him on the sixth day of the eleventh month of the 2018th year after the coming of Christ. And it came to pass that the missionaries, having great desires to be obedient to the missionary handbook, inquired with their ward mission leader for a douseki, that the missionaries might be able to enter into Nakamura-san's home and expound the scriptures to him. 

Now the ward mission leader, being exceedingly desirous to assist the missionaries in their efforts to bring Nakamura-san unto a knowledge of the goodness and everlasting mercy of the Lord, sent a LINE unto the Relief Society president to inquire after a sister who might be able to accompany the missionaries to the home of Nakamura-san. And it came to pass that a sister was found, thus causing the missionaries to become exceedingly excited, for while the teaching of the children of men brings great joy to the hearts of all those who engage in the work, standing in the midst of old shoes in the genkan of a seventy-nine year old man's house has a tendency to cause an undesirable amount of pain in the feet of the missionaries and the hips of the old man. 

But it came to pass that as the day appointed unto the missionaries to teach Nakamura-san arrived, the previously established douseki became suddenly unable to fulfill the necessary requirements of biking 30 minutes to his house. And thus the missionaries became exceedingly concerned as to the future of their lesson, as the appointed time was fast approaching and there was none to douseki for them. 

But behold, as the missionaries were thus standing by the vending machine and drinking melon cream soda to calm their agitated spirits, it came to pass that Naganuma Shimai called the missionaries over LINE, inquiring as to whether or not they were in need of a douseki. And thus we see that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those who act in faith and are obedient unto his commandments. For Naganuma Shimai was able to douseki for the missionaries and thus assist in bringing an added measure of the spirit into the home of Nakamura-san, notwithstanding her tendency to become overcome with the joy of the gospel and thus accidentally expound upon the scriptures too much to Nakamura-san. 

And it came to pass that in the later hours of that same day, the missionaries had a lesson with Suenaga-san shortly before the hour appointed unto them to teach eikaiwa. Now, Suenaga-san, being a man of great learning, had many questions for the missionaries which they did not fully understand, and this because of the exceeding difficulty of understanding the vocabulary of things related to Buddhism in the Japanese language. But behold, the dousekis, being native Japanese speakers with great knowledge pertaining to the matters of Buddhism, were able to address the many concerns of Suenaga-san. 

And it came to pass that the missionaries looked on in confusion as the lesson became increasingly more difficult to understand aside from the helpful diagram which the assistant ward mission leader had drawn of the whiteboard. And thus the missionaries began to pray fervently in their hearts that they would be able to turn the lesson back to the first principles and ordinances of the gospel instead of questions about the history of polygamy in the church. But behold, the strength of the excitedness of the dousekis was too strong for the missionaries to overcome in that day, and the missionaries became thus tsukareta in trying to regain control of the conversation. And thus we see the exceeding necessity of maintaining control over a lesson with excitable dousekis and explaining to excitable dousekis the importance of pure and simple testimony and the power of the Holy Ghost and the first principles and ordinances of the gospel in converting the hearts of men. 

And it came to pass that in the following days of the week, the missionaries encountered many amusing and interesting things, which things can not all be written. Nevertheless, some of these things are expedient that they should be written, and thus an account shall be given hereafter.

And it came to pass that on the Friday of the week the missionaries were invited once again to come to the house of Matsumoto-san to play the Japanese koto and meet her friends. And it came to pass that the missionaries were asked to sing for the obaachans as well, and the obaachans were thus impressed with the missionaries' ability to sing and play the koto and their interest in the traditional music of Japan. And behold, Matsumoto-san, being exceedingly impressed with the missionaries' love for the song that is about a castle or something if Sherwood Shimai understood correctly, printed off copies of the koto sheet music for them, which thing caused Sherwood Shimai to be overcome with joy, and this because of her exceeding love for jammin music.

And it came to pass that on the following Saturday the missionaries walked for the space of an hour and a half, and this because of Pilling Shimai's pressing need for a bicycle and the exceedingly great distance between the missionaries' apartment and Asahi, one which could not be traversed today due to the many time consuming responsibilities of the missionaries. Now behold, the idea which the missionaries had was this: that while walking the exceedingly great distance to Asahi, there would be ample opportunity to preach the gospel to people which passed in the way. But behold, despite this great desire of the missionaries, it came to pass that not a soul was to be found on the entire length of the journey, which thing caused the missionaries great disappointment, as the distance which they walked was very great. Nevertheless, Pilling Shimai was able to procure an exceedingly suteki bike, and for this thing the missionaries have cause for much thanksgiving.

And it came to pass that on the Sabbath day it was expected that both Natsuki chan and Ooyama san would come and partake of the sacrament upon the Lord's holy day, and both the missionaries and the ward council were exceedingly excited about this expectation. But behold, the missionaries and also Wilkin Kyoudai received a LINE from Ooyama san, informing them of her inability to attend church last minute, which thing caused the missionaries and the bishop exceedingly great grief, for not only could she not come this week, but also the rest of the month. Nevertheless, the missionaries and the ward council maintained hope in the goodness of the Lord and trust that he works in mysterious ways. And it came to pass that Natsuki chan did come to church, which thing caused the missionaries great joy, for she hadn't been to church in over a whole transfer. And behold this is not all, for the missionaries were able to commit Natsuki chan to come every week hereafter with the promise that they would help her with her English listening comprehension skills, which thing she did greatly desire. And thus we see that the Lord is mindful of his children, and will reveal to his missionaries many ways in which they may bring his children to come unto him, be it through difficult Japanese college entrance exams or hiking or any other number of ways which are not all known unto us at this time.

And thus we see that despite the many difficulties and afflictions of the missionaries, they have been exceedingly blessed of the Lord, and do look forward with an increasing brightness of hope for a baptism by the end of the year, and this because they do know of the goodness of the Lord and trust in the revelations of his word to their mission president. And these things I, Sherwood Shimai, do write and bear record that all may know of the exceeding mercies of the Lord to his missionaries and that they may also know that the missionaries do truly have faith in the Lord their Redeemer, even unto the salvation of many souls in the Japan Kobe Mission. Amen.

ๆ„›ใ—ใฆใ„ใพใ™! ๐Ÿ’•

Sherwood ๅง‰ๅฆน

19ๆญณ 20ๆญณ

1.) mom your hot chocolate recipe is literal chocolate gold from heaven
2.) I play the koto again

Monday, November 5, 2018

Where's Professor Oak When You Need Him?

Konnichiwa minasan! 

A new week, a new transfer, a new dawn about to rise in this the Land of the Rising Sun. Except winter is coming so the dawns are way later now. But that's neither here nor there. 
Also, I'm a trainer now! ๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰ 
*turns baseball cap backwards and throws a pokeball* 
My bean chan's name is Pilling Shimai. She's from Canada and I love her. Lots of stuff has happened this week. We are pleased. 

Monday: hiking with Suenaga san. It was great. We even got to talk to a solid couple of people on the train to the hiking spot. I love "wow your Japanese is so good" dendo. It makes me laugh.

Tuesday: met with both Nakamura-san and Suenaga-san. We were able to set up a lesson on Friday with Nakamura-san. He's a sweet old man. Thinks too hard about things. He needs to feel more. Suenaga-san has read all the way up to Jacob 7 and I am deeply impressed. He said he didn't understand Jacob 5 but this is to be expected. We ended up having a very lovely discussion about the Plan of Salvation. He was very surprised by the doctrines of the Spirit world and the resurrection and the kingdoms of glory. Finally realizing that Buddhism and Christianity have differences! Progress! Woo!

Wednesday: met up with Jenny for lunch. Had a really nice conversation with her. She seems really lonely. I hope we can continue that connection with her even though Jones Shimai has transferred. She's really sweet and is well on the path to being prepared to receive the gospel. She also happens to be writing a really cool book about the Civil War interestingly enough.

Thursday: Went to Kobe to pick up my bean! Got all of Pilling Shimai's stuff in order and had a really solid SKK. She's really excited to learn Japanese. I actually have to tell her to take breaks from studying haha or she'll just go all day. We've got awesome plans to strengthen the youth and get them to join the Youth Battalion to gather scattered Israel. Busyness is a lie. All in your head. The hard part is getting them to break out of this matrix if you will. I also made her eat natto and then gave her black thunder all in one day. Mighty successful if I do say so myself. She's basically all trained now. Beans don't need to experience anything else lol. 

Friday: had a lesson with Nakamura-san. Not the best lesson in the universe, but then again they can't all be, I guess. His Japanese is difficult to understand. Also he struggles with the whole faith thing. He wants proof before he'll believe but that's not how it works, so he's struggling a lil bit there. We're working on it. We did some solid McDonald's dendo after the lesson and met a really cute couple of high school students. We helped them with their English homework, which was to write a scary story involving a witch, a graveyard, and a surprise. It ended up turning into a semi-scary story where the surprise was the witch falling in love with a werewolf lolol. It was really fun actually and we swapped contact information too! They were very cute.

Saturday: Koyama Shimai invited us to this dance festival for Culture Day where this singer called Bolo-san who was really popular like 30 years ago came and played this song he wrote for the 2019 Tokyo Olympics all about friendship and love and stuff. And then we danced to it like seventy bazillion times. I'll never be able to forget that dance. It's engrained into my soul now. But it was way fun and we got like seven contacts out of it too. It was way cool. We also got to go in sort of costume. I drew polka dots on my face to become an alien and Pilling Shimai wore a red dress to be a ketchup bottle. We even won a prize of fancy anko for being from a far away place. It was very great.

Sunday: miraculously! We met Natsuki chan for like 5 minutes! And she said she'd meet with us every week from now on! Blessings only! This is the only thing that mattered that day. Nothing else compares. Except that Pilling Shimai accidentally obtained the nickname Pin-chan (like bean except a P) because her name is hard to pronounce apparently. It made me laugh.

But yes! This is the kanji of the week. It has been a party. Until next time!

ๆ„›ใ—ใฆใ„ใพใ™! ๐Ÿ’•
Sherwood ๅง‰ๅฆน

1-2) hiking again with Suenaga San and the amagasaki shimaitachi
3.) another crab in the gutter. He was very alive
6.) us at the dance festival
7.) Bolo san and some bomb costumes at the dance festival

Sherwood Chourou - Week 38 in Japan

Konnichiwa! We are back to the slowish days once more. We've been dendoing and teaching plenty, but nothing outstanding has arisen ...