It has been another crazy fast week here in Japan, and unfortunately one of my last! It has gone by so fast it is incredible. I remember like it was yesterday walking into the MTC leaving my family behind and meeting my host missionary who was going to Arizona and he took me to my room and I met my companion. As I sat in that room, all of us just leaving our families just thinking to myself, what have I gotten myself into. I can't do this. I felt much like Peter who willingly jumped out of his boat to go meet the Savior. He at first did it, had confidence because the Savior was right next to him. At first I thought I could do it. I had been called of God. How can I fail? But then I remembered that I had to learn a new language and a new culture. I had to go to a far away land where essentially I had 0 friends. Not one. And I sunk and fell into the depths of despair like Peter. But as soon as I asked for help I got it. Jesus immediately strectched out his hand and saved me. I have fallen many time sense that experience and unfortunately will continue to fall but every time I have fallen, Christ has been there to help me up, and put me on my feet. I thought these two years would never end, but contrary to that...I dont know where they have gone. I am sad to leave Japan. I have learned to love the people and the culture that is here. Eventhough sometimes I might complain about the food...most of it is good, and the stuff that isn't good, some Japanese people don't even like it. It has been the greatest experience in my life...one that I would never trade in a million years.
I would also like to thank everyone who has said a prayer for me. it has helped more than you can imagine. I'd like to thank people for the countless letters that I have received. It would have been much harder to serve without your love and support. Thank you. I'd also like to thank my two younger brothers, for their help and their encouragement. And my parents, there probably hasn't been a day gone by where they haven't thought about what I was doing. Thank you!! You have been so great to me and have helped me more then you can imagine!! I am excited to return and see you again!!
As I have pondered about what to say in this letter, I have thought over the experiences that I have had over the past two years. The amount that I have grown. I have thought about the hard times, but, honestly I can't remember all the hard times...they seem like a blur. Honestly one of the hardest weeks of my whole mission was a few weeks ago. Nothing went right, members were angry with us and all we were trying to do was serve the Lord. That is now over and everyone is forgiven. No one is angry and it just went by like a moment in time. I remember some of the happiest times like they were yesterday eventhough they happened months ago. I remember being lost, countless times and then out of no where finding someone, or being where we needed to be. Actually when I first came to Hamamatsu I had that experience. We went and visited a less active member and they weren't home. and so we decided to start heading back because English class was going to start and we were supposed to go to that. Unfortunately we started heading back and I got way turned around. We had been biking for about 30 minutes and were just going in what it felt like circles. We had seen the same building and same convenience stores. Well, we called the other missionaries and asked them too help us with englsih class because we were going to be late. We decided to go visit the same less active again because we were way close. That time they were home. We talked to them for a while scheduled a next appoitment and continued meeting with them. She has sense given us 3 referrals and her daughter has started coming back to church. If we wouldn't have gotten lost we might have never found that family because they lived an hour away by bike but because we got lost and just didn't give up we were able to help God's children. I think that is one of the biggest things I have learned on my mission. Don't give up!!! Life isn't always going to be easy just keep on trying and the Lord will provide a way. And you will be blessed 10 times for not giving up!!
Thank you all so much for your love and support!! I Love You