First miracle! We come to an apartment building where you can’t get in unless someone who lives there lets you through the glass door. At the entrance there is a just an intercom where you can call to any of the rooms in the whole building, and they can talk to you and choose whether or not to let you into the building or not. And sometimes people get mad if you just ring up to every single room, so we have to be careful with who we were going to try and call. Looking at all the rooms from outside, we try to figure which rooms have people home. About half of the lights are on. I ask Mateaki Choro which room looks good to him, and he says he likes the look of a room on the 3rd floor with dark pink curtains. We aren’t sure which room it was, but I make an educated guess and push 3...0...5. 呼ぶ。 We wait as it rings once, then twice. Then we hear a voice on the other end, asking who it is.
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.”
“What are you here for?”
“We would like to share a message about Jesus Christ.”
“Ok, come on in.”
I thought I had misheard him at first because no one ever lets us in at those type of apartments!! But sure enough, the locked door unlocked and opened to let us in to the apartment. We entered and walked up to the third floor, where we were able to teach our new friend the message of the Restoration and explain what the Book of Mormon is.
Second miracle—we are housing Saturday morning, and no one is home. An investigator we were planning on visiting wasn’t home, and we just finished a 2-story apartment building without a single answer. Looking over the city from the 2nd floor, we saw a prayer together for guidance. My eyes go straight to a gray and pink apartment up the street to the north. I point it out to Mateaki Choro and he says, “I was just thinking that that building looked like a good one.” We go there and not a single person is home—except one! A young, single mother and her adorable daughter. Clearly weighed down by months, maybe years of stress, we try to be really friendly and become her friends. Before we leave, we share just a little bit of how the Gospel has helped and blessed our lives and particularly our families. She took a pamphlet to read before we come to visit again next week!
Third miracle—Saturday afternoon, we are trying to contact a referral from 2 other missionaries who worked in Towada for just a day (during the blitz). We finally find the correct house, but the referral’s husband is not willing to listen to us for longer than a couple words before he slams the door. As we are leaving, we see someone pull up in a car, but immediately turn around and drive away. As we walk away, we see the same car pull out of a parking lot and come back to this house. The driver makes eye contacts with us and gives that laughing apology bow that Japanese people do when they feel awkward. We realize that it is our referral as we see her run out her car and into her house, worried that we would try and talk to her before she got in from the driveway. So we decide to drop that referral, but we still have hope that someone nearby is prepared for the gospel. We knock on door after door, but get only kekkoes and people who are offended that we go door-to-door trying to share religious beliefs.
After enduring for a good while, I notice myself start to get a little cynical, so we decide to leave and try a different area. On the way out of this neighborhood, we pass by a street and my eyes are caught by this little sign on the side of a duplex house. The spirit says so clearly—knock on their door! But we had already decided to leave. Plus, I am sick and tired of this area. But with every step I take farther away, the still small voice pushes harder in my mind. I rationalize to myself, “we can always do it another day.” We continue walking, and my comp says, “we can always knock their door another day.” Yeah, that’s what was I thinking too. Then suddenly I stopped. “Wait, did you think we were supposed to knock on that door?” “Well, yeah. But, we were already on our way out of the neighborhood...” We said a prayer to confirm what we already knew through the spirit—and again I felt, go to the house! We knock on the first door—no answer. Second door—kekko desu. We knock on their next-door neighbor’s house—and an energetic 7-year old boy rushes to the door. えっー、外国人だ！！ (Oohh! Foreigners!) And his 3 sisters all come running to the door and ask us all kinds of questions. The mom comes to the door to see what all the commotion is about, and asks who we are. We explain that we are missionaries, and ask permission to share a message with her family. Before she can even respond, the kids cry out in chorus, “Yes! Of course! Please come in!!” We enter and share John 13:34 about love. We share a 5-minute message about love and giving hugs, and the kids are a little shocked about the radical notion of hugging their own siblings. But we promise them that they will become good friends if they hug each other.
After autographing various pieces of paper, answering their questions about Santa Claus, being graciously shown their different homework assignments, and taking a picture together, we leave. The kids all run to the window and wave us down the length of the whole street until we turn the corner, out of sight. Until next week!
The Lord is really working right here with us!! Every time we turn to Him in prayer, He guides us. I know He lives and directs this work. This is His church, and His gospel. I know it. I live it. I love it!!
1-3: Bandai conference! See if you can find me in all of these pics ;)
We had a capture the flag snowball fight, played volleyball, went in the group o-Furo, and made little glowing snow cave things (see pic 7) for a music video!
|I sneakily switched name tags with President when he gave me a hug|
at conference, so now he calls me President haha.
|The A Kazoku|