Monday, September 24, 2012

Week 4 - Kiseki!!!

Wow this week FLEW BY! We were writing the report for our weekly call in report last night, and it literally felt like we had written the one for last week the night before. Time is flying by... Tomorrow I will have been on my mission for two months already! Crazy. It has been such a  great experience, I am so grateful to be here!
Up until a few days ago, I had seen no signs that Hokkaido was really as cold as everyone says it is. The whole time I ahve been here it has been HOT, or at least warm enough to go without a jacket and to sleep with the windows open - it was great! Then it rained a couple days ago, and its starting to cool off. Its still in the 20s, which is pretty good, but I am starting to pull out the longer sleeves and tights now. The word on the streets and with the members is that Obihiro doesn:t get a ton of snow, but it is freezing. It gets down to about minus 20 to minus 30 degrees C. I can:t even imagine temperatures that cold!! So I am relishing every little bit of heat that we have here while it lasts!!
Speaking of warm feelings... WE GOT TWO INVESTIGATORS TO COMMIT TO BAPTISMAL DATES THIS WEEK!!! Yay!! I am so excited! Eiko-san is set for October 28, and Ayaka-san for November 11. They are both so great! Eiko is in her mid fifties probably, and I have actually only met her once - its hard to meet with her because her mother is in a hospital outside our area and she spends a lot of time with her. Hopefully she will be able to come back soon so we can teach her more - we will probably have to move her date back if she doesnt come back soon. Ayaka is the one I told you about last week, a referral from a member that just came right out at the beginning and said she wanted to get baptized - she came to church for the first time yesterday, and we have been able to teach her lesson 1 about Joseph Smith and we showed her the restoration DVD last time we met. She is about 25, and a super nice girl, it has been such a blessing and so much fun to meet her and teach her! I am looking forward to the next few weeks as we continue to teach her - she has such a sweet spirit, and the ward members already have reached out to her a lot. The ward is great, everyone is super supportive, and we have been able to get quite a few referrals recently, so that has been a HUGE blessing. Members really are such an important part of missionary work - I wish I had understood that better before my mission!
On Saturday this week we went to a ward activity and spent the morning harvesting potatoes for a young men/young women:s fundraiser - it was a flashback to the NK with sweet potatoes, it was so fun! The members are really so great.
We also had a cleaning check this week, the senior office couple in the mission are going around to all the apartments in the mission for cleaning checks, and they stopped by last night. On a scale of 0-100, our apartment got a 99! So we were pretty happy about that - we worked pretty hard in the last couple of weeks :) it is pretty amazing though how much more you can feel the spirit in a clean apartment. So we have made it a goal to keep it clean :)
Missionary work is really so amazing. Its somewhat of a roller coaster sometimes, but the highs and the blessings always far far outweigh any lows. One example of a miracle this week (besides the baptismal dates of course :) ). It had been a long day, and we were both starving, but we had no time for a dinner break because we had appointments/meetings the rest of the night. I said a prayer as we were biking to our next appointment, a less active member whose husband is not a member, that somehow we would have time to make dinner that night, or that the less active member would offer us dinner. We arrived, and spent were talking with the member for about 20 minutes, the husband was just sitting in the corner watching TV and smoking, when all the sudden he gets up, and the first thing he says to us is "Would you like some ramen?" It was a miracle!! And it was delicious.
I wish I could tell you more, there are literally little/big miracles every single day. I love being a missionary, and I know this church is true!
I love you all, and I am praying for you!!
Sister Budge

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