Monday, March 31, 2014

And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth . . .

Hello everyone....

I got to shower about 12 times this week. If you will recall, there are 7 days in a week, and most normal people shower once a day. But for me it was Genesis 7:19: "And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered." In shorter terms, IT RAINED BUCKETS.

We spent a lot of time visiting church members this week. Had some good visits with them. One that stands out to me was with the N family. The parents are really old, but still super happy and cheerful. The father is 92 years old, and he served in the Japanese military during World War II as a radio operator. He had some crazy experiences. An extremely humble and kind man. 

we're over it
It was an interesting experience to talk to a man who was once compelled to fight against my own country and then be able to sit in the same room with him, all old feelings of enmity completely dispelled, talking about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the love that God has for all of His children. We truly have come full circle.

On Friday my companion, Elder Ch, traveled to the mission headquarters in Nagoya while I stayed to hold down the fort here in Fukuroi. 

heading to work

I was accompanied by two much younger missionaries, one of whom had been out on his mission for only a couple days. The three of us had a great day together. We helped weed the garden of a family in our ward for several hours and then spent the rest of the day knocking on doors. Much to my surprise, we actually found a man who was interested in learning more, and he invited us to come back again next week. It was very sudden but quite welcome. Missionaries LOVE it when people are so open and receptive to learning more about the gospel.

On Saturday we went with a couple church members to an ancient Japanese shrine up in the mountains. The area up there was pretty touristy, and in the little bustle of shops and bazaars down below we hoped to share the Gospel with some people. No luck, but the scenery was beautiful.

mountain shrine
cherry blossom Spring

 At church on Sunday, we (the missionaries) put on a special meeting for the whole branch to talk about missionary work. It was fun. We talked briefly in front of everyone about seeing the big picture of life rather than our own limited perspective of the next day or next week, and then Elder Chiba and I did a role play in front of everyone in which I was a colleague of his at work and he was a church member trying to casually bring up the Gospel in a non-confrontational, ordinary way. We managed to somehow make it funny, and I think the people liked it.

The main goal was to help them realize how easy and comfortable it can be to talk to friends or colleagues about the good news of Jesus Christ and the wonderful knowledge that we have about Him. It was a good experience.

Then later that night, while knocking on doors, Elder Ch and I were blessed to find someone else to teach. A middle-aged woman who was very nice seemed intrigued by our message, and allowed us to come back and teach some more. Legit. Then that night we had a chance to meet with the less-active church member who has ten cats and help her out with some stuff.

For those of you reading this who know the Holmstead family, I got a letter from Kaylee Holmstead (serving in the Japan Sendai Mission) that had llamas on it. If you know her family then you`ll know why that`s funny, hahaha. It was great.

Overall this week really wasn`t anything groundbreaking, but I nevertheless had some experiences this week that have strengthened my testimony even further of the divinity and infinite love of our Father in Heaven. I really am so grateful for the Gospel and everything that I have as a result. It means everything to me.

Thank you everyone for your CONSTANT love and support. I get letters weekly from people whom I love, and it is always the greatest thing ever. You are all the best!!

Peace and love,
Elder Naylor

anything we can do to get our message out

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