This is Kobe, Japan.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

15 April (16 in Japan) Otsu

Week 93
Mission Log
As of today, we can stop wearing our suit coats all the time.  That`s nice because it`s starting to get pretty warm on some days.  It`s not an unbearable heat yet, but I definitely get a lot more thirsty throughout the day as we ride around on our bikes.  I`m going to have to start carrying water bottles around with me again.  We still have to wear our suit coats at church or in any meetings, not when we are just out doing normal proselyting.  The birds and bugs are all starting to come back out for the Spring.  The Sakura (cherry blossoms) are still out and looking very pretty.  It`s a good time to be in Japan. 
I got a phone call at night before church and was asked to give a talk in sacrament meeting.  So, I gave a talk during sacrament meeting, taught an investigator a lesson during Sunday School, talked with another non-member during the third block, and after church taught a fireside about missionary work.  It was a whole lot of teaching stuff crammed into a short time.  There was another investigator that was supposed to meet with us just after that, but he didn`t come.  I think all of it went pretty well.  I pretty much just share stories, experiences, and parables when I speak or teach.  It seems like the easiest to understand.  Or, I draw diagrams, pictures, and Japanese characters on the whiteboard to help people understand.  The cool thing about Japanese is that I can explain gospel concepts to people by showing them how the word is written and talking about that.  It`s way easy for Japanese people to understand. 
We now split our English class into a beginner and advanced class each week.  My companion teaches the advanced class and I teach the beginner class which consist of only an investigator family that we have.  It`s a mom, dad, two little girls (9 and 7) and a baby.  None of them really speak any English at all.  So, I teach them something simple like animal names and then we just play games for the rest of the time.  It`s pretty fun, but also pretty hard.  In the other class they just have a conversation in English for an hour.  If you have any ideas of a game that kids would enjoy, please send it.  We played pictionary and a game with making animal sounds last week.  They were both pretty fun. 
Cool experience of the week.  We were teaching a lesson to guy named Okumura and the member that we had sit in on the lesson with us randomly starts going off about the Word of Wisdom, which we hadn`t taught yet.  He says, "We don`t drink alcohol, coffee, tea, or smoke."  He then basically starts interrogating the investigator.  "Do you drink?  Do you smoke?"  I`m thinking to myself, what is this guy doing?  I was a bit surprised,but what surprised me even more was Okumura`s answer.  He said that he did drink and smoke quite often, but he had heard a week earlier that we don`t smoke or drink in the church.  So, he quit.  That was way awesome.  It`s not everyday that investigators quit smoking or drinking before we even teach the Word of Wisdom to them. 
I think that`s all I`ve got for this week.  Keep loving life.  I`ll write again next week.  Bye.
-Elder Isaac Swift

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