Hello Family and Friends,
How are you? I hope all is well. It sounds like all is well and it's insane that Austin is now officially working at the SWSC. Way to goBrother, proud of you:) It's just such a blessing hearing every week that all is well and the Lord is blessing my family and loved ones. Well on to this crazy week. So Tueaday- we stayed inside cause her knee is still bad, but we were able to still be effective and do things that helped for future work. But we get a call night from President Welch and he said my companion is leaving to go stay at the mission home for them rest of the 3 weeks to figure it out so she can get back out soon and work. So he said I'll call back tomorrow for details on when and new companion and etc. wow! So we went and packed and we both were sad to leave each other. She just cried and cried that night. It was a hard few hours. But I get a call the next day and a sister from the next area over named Makin Shimai is coming here and we would get picked up by the Bills (office couple serving) and anyway that was it. So I said bye to Harada Shimai which was way sad but o know in order for her to get better she needs to see a better Doctor and rest. So that's the crazy stuff. So we got here night and so we had and to do work. And was so amazing! I was so over joyed with happiness and love of this work. So we got a referral this week and so we went there first thing . Her name is Tomoka and she's a mom of 3 kids who are in their 20's. She's so cute! We went there and talked to her about what she heard from the elders before and stuff, at first she was nervous because we were Japanese but we said we understand most and if we don't we will teach you and after you could see that built her trust in us. But we got to know her and asked about her religious background and all she said was "sisters, I want to be saved." Wow, wait what?? I haven't heard that my whole mission. But we were so excited and talked about God and how he loves her and can help her return to him. We talked about prayer because she wasn't too familiar with God. And we explained how we prayed and she said oh that's more simple than I thought. And said she would pray and would love us to come back. So we are very excited about her. Second we have this eikaiwa student named Yamada San. She is so sweet and loves us missionaries. And recently she has been talking about how life has been hard and her family is struggling etc. so I just felt okay she's ready, we need to meet with her. So we called her and asked if she could meet this week and she said yup. So with my new companion we met her and wow was it amazing. We did the first lesson with our purpose and what to expect from meeting with us and talked a lot about God loving her and prayer. She said she had a strong desire to study more and help her family. We taught her how to pray and asked her to pray right there if God exists and she did. It was awesome. After she had tears in her eyes and said that was awesome. It was such an amazing feeling and being able to testify that God loves her at that moment brought so much joy to me. We challenged her to go home and pray again so she can know for sure God loves her. It was amazing. I'm so excited to keep teaching her and help her life through the gospel. I just love these people so much. I was able to speak in church this week and it went good actually. I talked about the spirit. Love that subject so I was happy about it. I had this whole talk written out and in the middle of it, so many different things came out of my mouth that I had no idea why or anything but it was so good and felt good after. Talking is always a little scary in Japanese but it was for sure the gift of tongues moment for sure. But it was a good two days here and can't wait for the next 3 weeks I have here! Well the thought of the week comes from a talk I've been reading in personal study. (One of the best time of the day) it's called "Of Regrets and Resolution" by President Uchtdorf. It's actually a quote what his wife said to him and I'm sure you've heard it before but I just loved it especially as a missionary and it's just flying by so it hit me. "Dieter, it’s not a race; it’s a journey. Enjoy the moment.” And it made me think of just the hard time these past few weeks but I was able to just enjoy them because of the gospel and our savior. How cool is that? So this week really focus on enjoying the journey. Don't make it a race, enjoy where you are cause it can change in the blink of an eye. Love life, it's always a blessing and God knows us. Simple message but it just hit me hard and I know it's meant to be enjoyed! He didn't put us here to suffer, so be happy:) God wants you to be. Love you all and miss you! Be safe and healthy!スミス姉妹 Smith Shimai💕
"I made a layered carrot cake for my comp before she left"
"A square watermelon"
"Branch conference with Welchs"
"A returned missionary from Japan going to the U, but he went back to Japan to visit and went to one of my areas today and met me! He sent this picture to my brother Tanner who is also going to the U! Small World!!"
"Curry party because that American guy on the left served here a year ago and came back"
"My new companion, emergency transfer, her name is Makin Shimai"