October 14, 2014
Well.... I am alive!!! We had to stay inside yesterday because of the typhoon. The winds were pretty crazy and everyone was calling us to tell us to get home. We were riding our bikes back as fast as we could... soooo scary, but so funny. Anyway, I never thought I would be sending this e-mail. This is my LAST e-mail home before I SEE YOU AGAIN!!!! I seriously can`t even believe it. I don`t know if I can adequately express how awesome this last week was and how much I wish I could be a missionary forever. I have really been blessed by God and I haven`t really thought about going home or felt trunky at all. Everyone has to keep reminding me that I am going home, that I am going home next week. It seriously doesn`t feel real. GENERAL CONFERENCE WAS THE BEST!!! It was cool to think that my family was watching it from all ends of the world (Japan, New Zealand, Chile & Utah).
Kaori chan. We met her on the street 2 weeks ago and she is amazing. She rides an hour by bike just to go to our lessons. After teaching her lesson one she said she wanted to be baptized. However, her dad says she can be baptized just can’t join the church.. So she went home and told her parents about everything she learned with us and how much she loved it. But they wouldn’t listen. She took the “Strength of Youth” pamphlet home and showed her parents. She is only 16 and has so much faith. She was so sad we had to cancel our appointment yesterday because of the typhoon.
Leiah is like the coolest most amazing person ever and we met her last Saturday. Her brother died this week, but she wanted to meet us. She is from the Phillipines and has so much faith in Christ and has really had such a hard life, but she is positive and trusts in God. When we taught her the plan of salvation, she said you guys are the answer to my prayers. My brother wasn’t really good and so I have been so afraid for him and praying for him, but now I know he has a chance. You gave me hope, you gave me relief. Then when we taught her about Joseph Smith she said I think the things you are saying are real. I believe you. She inspires me. It is crazy how we met her the week before her brother died.
We had interviews with President Yamashita last week and I sure do love him so much. At the end of my interview, his eyes started to water and he just said "Sister Crofts, I am going to miss y" and I said "stop! stop! I still have a week. I still have one more interview." I was just crying so bad because I don’t want it to be over. Because the Yamashitas were in Yokkaichi for interviews, we asked them to do a lesson with Kobayashi san after. When Kobayashi san met President Yamashita he just turned to me, eyes big, and said "WHOA. chikarazuyoi" (which means, like full of power) We talked about the doctrine of Christ and how baptism is just a beginning and focused more on the temple. The Spirit was so strong, there was so much peace and power and as I spoke, I couldn’t speak quiet enough. It was probably one of the strongest moments in my life. Kobayashi san, he is SO ready. He understands that President Yamashita is a member of the First Quorum of Seventy and so it is a big deal to be able to meet him. Oh my, that was seriously the coolest lesson ever. So then, Kobayashi san came to general conference broadcast, both sessions on Sunday. He loved President Monson’s talk so much and he bowed so humbly and quietly whispered amen after his talk. So after the first session, he turned to me and said "Crofts san, President Monson said the same things that you have been telling me. I thought it was kind of fushigi (wondrous) na.." Then during that hour break, several of the members who have helped for his lessons were sitting by us and Kobayashi san was just teaching us about agency and charity. He was telling us how lately he has been thinking a lot about charity and he doesn’t know why. He feels like he is wanting to do more nice things for other people and if you don’t have charity you are nothing. We said, Kobayashi san!!! There is a scripture that says that!! He couldn’t believe it. Then he started talking about how he thinks it is amazing that God gives us agency because if we weren’t unhappy we couldn’t really appreciate true happiness. One of the members and I almost jumped as he was speaking because it was so profound. So right before the second session, I said "I know you are ready to be baptized, I don’t know your worries or concerns, but God does. There is a baptism this Sunday, and I really feel you are ready. Before you answer, I want you to watch this next session of conference because I know that God will comfort your heart and give you His answer." SO OF COURSE. EVERY SINGLE TALK could not have been more directed at Kobayashi san. I felt bad that everyone had to listen to General Conference when it was for Kobayashi san. Using our free agency... honoring our ancestors through family history and the temple... and of course. Elder Bednar`s talk?!?!? OH MY. I couldn`t believe it. He loved it. He ran over to Oda Shimai and said "I got my answer Oda san!!!" He left soon after conference, and we tried calling him that night and Monday, but he didn’t answer. He wouldn’t meet Monday because of the typhoon. He told brother Itakura that he would see us on Wednesday. So now we are waiting!!!! ahhhh. I think he can make it for this Sunday.
Well, I have so many things I want to tell you about, and this mail is all about Kobayashi san because ahhhh he is just so aweosme. I have been walking faster too because of the boot you sent me. Thank you so much Dad! Also thank you Liz for the awesome package too!!! I wish Bobby and Kristy could come on our trip, but I know they are exactly where they are supposed to be. I am so excited to see you next week!!!!
|Our bike ride all the way out to Komono to see Kobayashi San|
|Kobayashi San's mom gave me a chair for my foot. She is so cute.|
|I got to see Jessa and Sakura Chan|
|Jo Chourou gave me a ginger pen because I love ginger so much. Ha Ha so funny.|
|Kaori Chan and Sayaka Shimai. I love them|
|Mika is the happiest ending. She is going to America, her depression is gone and she has changed her life. It was so awesome to see how much the gospel changed her. She is so happy.|
|Of course you need snacks to watch the General Conference broadcast. I love this.|
|I have the best companion ever!! Me and Oda Shimai.|