Rainy season is officially here! I am so excited. I absolutely love the rain. And not just because it gives me an excuse to wear pants on my bike. ;) I don't know why but the rain is magical to me and I just think it's splendid. We've had a couple of good rainy days this week to start off the season. Apparently after rainy season, near the end of July, the humidity and heat sets in for the summer. Not sure if that will be as enjoyable as the rain...but bring it on!
This week has been tough, but the Lord is blessing me and puts ground under my feet at the last minute when I think I'm about to walk off a cliff. Sometimes it is hard to know how he feels about my labors each day, but I absolutely know he is listening to me. Slowly, little by little, day by day, he is changing my heart. There is no way I could do this without him. I wouldn't have made it out here without him in the first place. Everything in the past few weeks has been forcing me to rely on him more and more, and He doesn't let me down.
My P-day has been a bit shortened because of a late weekly planning and then visiting Ida Shimai at her job at IKEA in mina-funabashi. Sorry if this is short. That was an adventure though! IKEA was HUGE...I think like 5 or 6 stories. Looks exactly the same as it does in America though. Really, really strange going in there. Tomura Shimai and I both felt like we were in America. Had a good (although Japanese sized) hotdog. When did I decide it was okay to eat hotdogs anyways? Speaking of food...so far the only healthier thing I've noticed about Japanese food is that they don't use so many preservatives and they don't gas their bananas. And somehow, their watermelon here is absolutely to die for!! Seriously. I have never tasted a more glorious melon! I wish I could send you one.
Ida Shimai is doing really well. She is a bit nervous for baptism and sharing her testimony, but we know she'll be just fine. She is one of the most genki people I've ever met. (genki= happy, healthy, energetic) I respect her a lot because she came out of some tough family situations but has chosen to be who she is today and hasn't let her circumstances mold her character. We know the gospel can be such a blessing for her and we can't wait to see her recognize its influence in her life.
After leaving IKEA we stumbled upon what I at first thought was a stadium but turned out to be a HORSE RACE TRACK! Tomura Shimai was laughing at me because I got excited so quickly. Who would've thought there were horses in this crazy city? It was a full size race track too! Okay this probably doesn't hit home with anyone like it does for me so I'll stop going off about it. :D
Glad you got the letter from Tomura Shimai this week. She is so sneaky. The only reason I knew she sent it was because she asked for my home address. (She felt too guilty looking in my drawers). But by the time she asked it was already sealed so I wasn't sure what she was sending off. Glad it was good. :)
Church is really good. I love the ward here and I feel at home while at church. Kind of funny...but I've matched some people in this ward with people in the Battle Creek 1st ward. Whether for looks or personality...they have some twins out here in Tokyo! So funny! I've found Sister Thatcher and Sister Giles and several others. It's a fun game I play when my brain stops processing Japanese. This Sunday though, the Lord really blessed my Japanese. I had several unexpected circumstances where I needed to talk a lot. In the morning meeting with the missionaries and ward mission people I was asked to give a spiritual thought on the spot, then in Sunday school my study partner (not a member yet) just said 'zen zen wakarinai' when we were asked to explain about some spiritual gifts, so I got to explain them alone...and then later when talking with members my understanding was blessed. Though often I have to struggle and strain, the Lord really will lift the weight when I am doing all I can.
I love you so much! Thank you for your prayers. And thank you for the information about mission calls!!! When does Dallin leave? AND I CAN'T WAIT TO HEAR ABOUT DAVIN'S MISSION CALL!!!! I didn't know he'd even put his papers in yet!! Ahhhhhhhhhhh! Also maybe you could give me a brief update on Sister Shields? Is she coming home this month? Also Sato Shimai from Tandy's mission is one of our best ward missionaries. We use her as a joint in lessons all the time. She also goes out with us on the bikes once in a while to find referrals. She is a sweetheart.
Anyway...much love coming at you from across the pond!