Tuesday, March 3, 2015
21 November 2014 - First Round of Zone Conferences
How are ya? This week was good. We finished our rounds of Zone Conferences. This week I was able to go to Okinawa for the first time. It sure is warmer than Kyushu, but military people were everywhere! There are a lot of American Wards and Branches down there because of all the Americans. I kind of decided I don't like American Wards so much anymore. It was weird. So much loud talking, sweaty men playing basketball and such. Just made me remember how much fun coming home won't be. But anyways besides that point, the Zone Conferences went really good. It's amazing how you can tell how a zone is doing just by the spirit that is at the conference that day, and it is pretty easy to pin point what their problem may be by the feeling that is there.
After one of our Zone Taikais on Tuesday we had the opportunity to teach a Turkish man, and a 18 year old teenager. The Turkish man seemed only worried about understanding every little detail we said to him, and when we invited him to pray, he responded he is learning much from us so there is no need to pray to God right now, he can know if it's true by understanding and studying the doctrine we give him. Unfortunately after a little too long and a really jumpy lesson, he was still left with many questions and wasn't understanding as much as he wanted. The 18 year old on the other hand simply had the desire to know if this is true, to find more peace and happiness in his life, and the spirit in his lesson was so different. The funny thing is, I think by the end of his lesson, ironically he came out understanding more of the points we explained to him that day, with an excitement to pray to God to find this truth, all because he humbly allowed the spirit to reach him and guide him instead of trying to conquer each doctrinal point with the intent of reaching more knowledge. It was way interesting to see once again that no matter how much background knowledge we have, or how old or young we may be, as we simply have righteous desires to follow God's teaching for more happiness in life, we open our heart to be taught by the spirit aka the master teacher, which is at least 100x more effective and easier to understand than us trying to teach these things.
Also you already saw from Uchida shimai but I got to go back to Kagoshima yesterday!! It was so nice. Irisa shimai and Uchida shimai took time off work to help out with the Relief Society to make the lunches for the missionaries so they could see me. Yasashisugiru! Also I didn't even mess up on any of my magic tricks this week!! Phew! In all honesty, I sure am glad its over now. My hands were always shaking and my heart beating way hard every Zone Conference right before we did our part of the training because I was so nervous for the magic trick part. Gee Whiz, I'm just a normal guy give me a break.
Oh Mom you asked about Sho and Azumi: Sho is busy and doesn't respond to my emails, He only responds to letters. Ha ha Figure that one out. Azumi is doing good! She went to church last week and has been reading the Book of Mormon. I don't know if I ever told you the deal I made with her, but she was kinda struggling in Ecuador, being pressured into drinking and wasn't reading the Book of Mormon and such but she told me she wanted to change and knew she needed to repent. So we made a deal that I asked her to read the Book of Mormon everyday and she promised me if I would write in my journal in Japanese everyday in the month of October she would read everyday in October, and a couple weeks ago she ended up at church!! So I think it is going well and she is reading and praying regularly again.
Elder Chung and I were talking yesterday about how thankful we are for the foundation we have that has been set by our parents. There is no way we would be here today with these blessing from God if it were not for the example of our parents. So thanks for all you two do. I'm so thankful for you!
Well Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. Yes Mom, Kaicho and Gustafson Shimai invited us to have lunch with them on Thanksgiving so I think I will still have some turkey this year.
Well thanks for all you guys do.
Elder Chung and Travis
Elder "support system", Who needs chairs??
Picture taken by Uchida Shimai when Travis went to Kagoshima for his first visit as an AP.
Thought for the week: