Thursday, December 3, 2015

Still here in Kitakami!

November 23, 2015: Week 56
Area: Kitakami

Companion: Trane Choro

Hey beloved family and friends! It was great to hear from you guys. It looks like Thanksgiving and Christmas is in full force. I hope we can all survive the season! In all reality though, now that I'm over a year out, I feel this holiday season will be a lot better than last year! I look forward to it!

I can't believe another week and another transfer is past. With that being said, we received transfer calls this last week and it's been decided that I'm staying in Kitakami for another transfer! So now I'll be here until at least January. Man I've been here forever! It will be fun though. It might be a little difficult to get a ton done due to the fact it's gonna be dumping snow here pretty soon, but hopefully some good things can happen before the time comes that I leave Kitakami. I'm pretty close to some of the members so it will be fun. However, to my surprise Elder Trane is being transferred. President Smith is doing this thing that if you transfer, you go to Sendai on Thursday and then he'll tell you where you're going and who your comp is. So right now, I have no idea who my companion is. I guess I'll let you know next week!

This week was a pretty solid week in regards to being able to meet with investigators. We finally got to have a lesson again with one of our investigators. I hadn't been able to teach her for two months because she is way busy, but she thought I would be transferring so she wanted a lesson before I would leave. We taught her about following the prophet and how God speaks to us today just like In olden times, then we invited her to be baptized again, but she didn't accept. She still says she doesn't want to commit and she wants to study more. I really think she knows it's true, but she just doesn't want to do anything about it. Something is keeping her from baptism and I don't know what it is. Hopefully we can figure it out soon!

Also, we had an investigator in church yesterday!! It was the first time in months that I've had an investigator come to church! The young college student guy that I found on the street two months ago came yesterday! It was so great to have an investigator there. The members were nice to him and I think he liked it. I was a little scared for him, but he said he wants to come back. We also were able to have a lesson with him during the second hour with a return sister missionary jointing. It was good. We used this new pamphlet that is on a trial period right now in our mission. It's about Christ. It's pretty good, but pretty hard to understand I think, especially for Japanese people. I think it was hard for him to understand but he is coming along!

Thursday, we kind of had a sudden meeting for all of the trainers and new missionaries in Sendai so we got to ride a bus down there, go to my favorite restaurant in Sendai and attend a meeting with President Smith. It was fun to see everyone including some of my old companions and district members. And it was great as always to hear from President Smith. It was kind of a review of the training type meeting. It was a time to reflect on what went well and what didn't go well in regards to training. I definitely made some mistakes and had some poor judgement while training, but I did learn a lot from it. I'm grateful I had the opportunity to train a new missionary (even though he sure didn't act like one at all.)

After the meeting, since there are no late buses to Kitakami, we took the Shinkansen!! It was so much fun. It put a major dent in my wallet but fun nevertheless. Waiting in the Shinkansen part of the Sendai station honestly felt like i was in the airport waiting to board a train. And the Shinkansen is sooooo fast! It got us home in like 45 minutes compared to a 2.5 hour bus ride. It was way cool!

Then on Friday, we had District meeting and then Elder Hanson and I had splits in   Ichinoseki. I love splits with Elder Hanson; they're fun. We've been in the same district for 6 straight transfers so we are pretty close. We got to meet his investigator from Kenya who is training to run in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. And we also had a dinner appointment with a member. She is a great cook and made us sukiyaki, one of my favorite Japanese dishes. I don't know if we can eat it in America though because you can't eat raw eggs there. It was way fun. Then to top it off, we are both stoked for Christmas so we listened to Christmas music and hung up Christmas lights after planning. It was a great time.

To end, I'll tell you about some stuff I've been studying. I gave a training on following the teaching model that Christ set. There are countless examples in the scriptures where Christ shows us how to teach effectively. And since we should do our best to become like Him, we should try to teach like Him as well. He not only asked effective questions and listened intently, not only taught using scriptures, but He loved those he taught. And when you do that, focus on their needs and how much you want to help them, then they will open their hearts and understand. It was a pretty fun training to study and prepare for.

Well that's about it. It was a fun week. I'm excited for Thanksgiving this week to go to Sendai and also have a Thanksgiving meal with the Mower couple and the Ichinoseki elders. Should be a ton of fun. It won't be the same as home, but it will feel like I'm with family a little bit, especially with a missionary couple! I hope you guys have a great turkey day! Make sure to eat plenty of stuffing, turkey and deliciousness for me! And then Kelsey and I will be there next time! I love you guys so much. I'm so grateful for you and your loving support. Have a fantastic week!  Love and miss you!

Elder Nathan Didericksen

With the Mowers and the Ichinoseki elders

Abura soba is amazing!

Getting into the Christmas Spirit!

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