Sunday, February 15, 2015

Genki wo dashinasai

Hey peeps,

I haven't sent out any big mass emails lately, so I just wanted to let you know that things are going great here in Japan-land and I am enjoying it here very much.

This past week we were mostly traveling and did not spend much time in our own area, instead going to the two farthest zones in the mission (Kanazawa and Shizuoka) to do some companion exchanges with the Zone Leaders. Had some good experiences with them and some surreal experiences, from talking to people on the street in the middle of a freezing thunderstorm up north in Kanazawa to stopping people on a bridge backed by a picturesque and clearer-than-life backdrop of Mount Fuji. The land is beautiful and so are the hearts of the people. While riding the subways of Nagoya in the midst of our travels, I accidentally left one of my bags full of important stuff on one of the trains. Nagoya is a big city with a large, complex subway system, and it is easy to lose stuff. But I have come to learn that Japan is seriously the best place in the world to lose something, and those wonderful train crew bent over backwards to find my bag for me and were successful within minutes of me talking to them. From that small experience my love for the Japanese people grew even deeper. These people really know how to serve others.

We set a baptismal date of March 1st for our young investigator, Y! He is doing well and progressing slowly but steadily. We are calling and texting him every day to help him. I am grateful for his friendship and the good experiences we have had teaching him. It's hard for me to believe that I have been in this area working in the mission office for more than three months already. I imagine I may soon be called to go out and be a regular proselyting missionary again.

Mom, you were asking about some of the differences in the Japanese language and how it has benefited my personal study. One of my favorite examples of a Japanese scripture that I love, Doc&Cov 68:6: 

Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, 
for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you; 
and ye shall bear record of me, even Jesus Christ, 
that I am the Son of the living God, 
that I was, that I am, and that I am to come.

In Japanese, that first line "be of good cheer" is translated as 元気を出しなさい (genki wo dashinasai). The word genki means encouragement, health, happiness, cheer, and basically all meanings similar to that; it's kind of an all-encompassing word. The wo is a connecting particle between the noun genki and the verb dashinasai, which is a command form of the verb dasu, which means to take out, pull out, bring out, hold up, etc. Because the Lord is there, and he is with us. And his message is the best message in the world!

I love this wording in Japanese because it implies that we already have genki within us, and whenever we are sad or discouraged all we have to do is find it and pull it out and show it to the world. It's just like the Light of Christ, which resides within all of us....nobody is lacking, but many of us need to search within ourselves and dasu that Light and that genki. I love it.

I really love my Savior and I love doing this work for him. Japan is just such a wonderful place and the Gospel is blooming beautifully here. I couldn't imagine doing anything else right now.

I hope all of you are staying genki and warm! Happy Valentine's Day!!

Peace and love,
Elder Naylor

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