I am now indeed in Japan. And the area I'm in (Sasebo) is about an hour and half away from Nagasaki (it's in the nagasaki zone) and I'm pretty sure when Adam and Eve were taken from the Garden of Eden it was moved to Sasebo. Everytime we take through the countryside I basically die from how beautiful it is. There are all these rolling hills that are so green they are basically just giant bushes, and then in each valley there's all these beautiful Japanese style houses with gorgeous rice fields around them. It's so crazy awesome!
The first few days here were pretty hard. Let me tell you, walking around miles looking for a bike, with 3 and a half hours of sleep and having forgotten to bring water was not quite what I was expecting when I got to Japan. Also I'm not sure I thought about the natural rejection that comes from being a missionary. So it was really tough. But through it I really learned to rely on the Lord. Because I knew there wasn't anyway I was getting through those days without his help.
But after those two days It's been so great! I really do love the people here! Even though there are those people that won't even talk to us. There's also people here who despite not wanting to hear our message, still give us a smile and say (gambatte kudasai!) which means basically "good luck!" And the members here are so amazing! We had a district conference yesterday, and really the faith of the members here brought tears to my eyes a few times. It's amazing! It provides such a reason for why I'm here. Why I'm tracting through what feels like a waterfall and still ending up drenched from my own sweat even with a raincoat.
Me and my companion Elder Kameta (who is really an awesome missionary) are both new in this area (Sasebo previously only had two elders) so we don't have any investigators yet. But we do have one that has several miracles attached to them which I really want to share!
At the end of our second day we decided to go housing, the only thing is it was kind of dark and really POURING rain. It was a wicked storm with thunder and everything. But we threw on our raincoats and went out, (in turned out dendo (missionary work) in the rain was to me the funnest thing ever) but anyways, we're our doing dendo and not having much success when I realize, "hey we never actually prayed" so we went right there and prayed. We continued onward.
Now we really wanted to find a nice big apartment building, but most of them have locks at the bottom so we can't get in. 5 min after we prayed I saw a massive one and said, "let's go there!" And so we went. And finally we found someone who wanted to listen! We taught her about the Book of Mormon and gave her one, and she said she likes reading books so she'd read it. It was great! So we did a little more and then went home. Which was a miracle we found our way back, because we were so dang lost that whole time. (The streets where we live are crazy and the address system is impossible. It's a little difficult haha) But we got back home and we were like, "shoot! We have no idea where that apartment building is! Or even which apartment she was in!" And we were mad at ourselves for not remembering.
The next day we decided to go visit a member. We went down and after 10 minutes of searching and asking actually found which house was hers (again the addresses are kind of really difficult) But she wasn't home. So we looked down the street and said, hey let's doing some contacting down there. We walked down 2 blocks and lo and behold right in front of us was that very same apartment building from yesterday! We had had no idea where we were so it was quite a surprise. But we still had no idea which of all of them were hers.
So we started walking up and just stopped on one of the floors. We were going to see if we could just find the right horizontal one and then try all the floors. So we find one we think might be it and we knock. Sure enough there she was! We were so surprised we weren't quite sure what to say! She said she hadn't read the book of Mormon yet, but was still planning on it. And we gave her a pamphlet and headed out, but this time we made sure we knew where it was. It was really a testimony that God really is leading us and helping us, because there isn't anyway in the crazy streets of Sasebo we could have done that on our own!
Thanks for all your support everyone! Love you!