Yep, that's right I totes wore a kimono this week!!!! In the summertime in Japan they have various summer festivals all over the country. We went to one with a couple of our investigators and they let us wear their kimonos!!! So kimonos are like a pbd. Like it takes at least 20 minutes to put it on. There is a very specific method of putting them on and a lot of times you have to be specially trained to know how to do it. So it was an amazing opportunity for us to be able to experience!!! It was 1000 degrees of Japanese cultural fun!!! I will never forget it!
So the other night we were housing, (knocking doors) and it was about 7:30 at night and we were not too far from our apartment. So our neighborhood is super dark and doesn't have very many street lights. It is also right next to a huge park that is very jungle-like and had who knows what kind of creatures living in it. Hence the reason there are so many mosquitos eating me on the daily. So we were doin our thang and we get to a less active member's house. We get to the porch and I stop DEAD in my tracks. I could not move. I could bearly get out the words "what. is. that?!" It was a GIGANTIC like bigger than I have ever seen in my entire existence even on animal planet SPIDER. Terrifying. So then we get to another apartment complex and walk around the side to see a cockaroach literally as big as my palm. My companion had to help me through this one. I ran as fast as I could past the mutantly huge creature and safely made it to the other side. Lesson learned: Japan has giant bugs that I am not too fond of. That was kind of a pointless story but whatevzzz.
Anyway yesterday during church we were sitting there minding our own business and all the sudden we got a new ward mission leader!! I know you hear that and are like.. so what? But that is a big deal to missionaries. We had absolutely NO idea. BUT we are excited to work with our new ward mission leader!
Speaking of new, with our new mission president there has come a lot of new ideas, methods, themes, etc. It has opened my eyes a lot and made me think deeper about why I am a missionary and what this is all about. Something that I have been thinking A LOT about lately is how desperately these people, and everyone for that matter, need Jesus Christ. My purpose as a missionary is to help others come unto Christ because that is what happiness is all about. Christ is where all true, pure joy stems from. It is through Him that we can be happy despite ANYTHING. I have just thought a lot about how I want to become more Christ-centered in my life and truly emulate the qualities He has. I know it is a lifelong pursuit but I wouldn't want to pursue anything else. I love my Savior so much. I know he died for you and for me and for every single tiny little Asian I meet every day. His love surpasses anything and everything. He is beckoning and wants us to rest in His glory. I am so grateful that I KNOW that. I am so grateful that no one can take that knowledge away from me. No huge hill or mutant bug can stop me from trying to tell others the good news of our older brother Jesus Christ. I love it!
Which brings me to my next point, I love it so much that I have decided to extend my mission! Now they only let us do that for an extra transfer so I will be coming home in March instead of February but I can't think of anything else I would rather be doing than serving the Lord for an extra 6 weeks as a missionary in Japan!
I love all of you! My prayers are with you!