Monday, October 13, 2014

Tokyo Japan Week 61

With Brother Sakaguchi, a returned missionary!

Hey everyone! It's been another way awesome week here in Urawa, it's really starting to feel like fall! The typhoon has kind of died off since coming up here, and we've got some nice rain, and the temperature dropped pretty low! I had to bust out the sweaters once again, so it's definitely starting to feel like fall! It's pretty cold, but I've always really enjoyed seeing the leaves change and especially all of the awesome holidays! I'm so excited for this coming Christmas, and I know it's gonna be such an awesome last Christmas in Japan. :)

As well this week we had the awesome opportunity to have interviews with President and Sister Budge! It was so awesome to receive that great advice, and as well it's always so great to feel of their love and spend some time with such great examples of service. It was so awesome as well to sit down with Sister Budge, and we had such a great time talking about the past 14 months I've been serving as a missionary. She told me she's seen me change so much, and as well as so many other seriously nice things. She thanked me for all of the hard work the past months, and as well we talked so much about the special time serving as a missionary for this great gospel. She and President Budge will be heading home right before, basically two weeks, before I'll be heading home, and we talked about some of the amazing things we have learned as missionaries. As well I shared with her my plans to attend BYU and teach at the MTC, and she got so excited and said they'd love to help me receive a job there! It was a really awesome miracle, and I'm really so excited to work hard to make that goal become a reality! This short time of being a missionary has truly changed my life so much, and I'm so excited to just keep giving this work my all, and do all I can to make every day count. There definitely are those hard days, but being a missionary has truly blessed and changed my life so much! Thank you so much always for your kind words, and always cheering me on, I have the most amazing family ever!

It sounds like you guys are all doing so awesome! I loved the pictures of the ride up to the canyon, it looked seriously so pretty, I was blown away! The leaves are starting to change color here in Japan, and I'm so excited for it to become super pretty fall colors! As well it's always so cool to hear about all the fun things you're doing, and it's so cool to see all the blessings that are coming your way! Just want to say always thank you so much for the amazing examples you guys always set for me, it really does mean so much, and it's so cool to see all the awesome things you're doing! Yeah I heard Meet the Mormons was awesome, hopefully it'll come to Japan! Haha, that'd be pretty gnarly. We've referred a couple of investigators to go check if out online, and they really love it! Especially the David Archuletta song, they really loved that, haha.

But overall it was a pretty awesome week! We as well had a great Zone meeting this week, and we really came together as a Zone to really work out these things that are happening in the Zone right now. Basically where we are at is really low, and we faced that with faith, and a desire to more fully repent and change. As Elder Shumway and I were planning the meeting, we definitely felt the love and guidance of the Spirit, and the meeting went really awesome! The Spirit was really there, and the message we wanted to get across came loud and clear, and the Zone is really so excited to go forward with faith! I can't lie, I haven't written too much about this situation because it's been a pretty big trial, but I'm so thankful Heavenly Father has blessed us with so many amazing miracles and this opportunity to more fully rely on Him, and make those adjustments needed to see this work go forward. It's definitely been pretty physically and spiritually exhausting, but I'm so thankful for this opportunity to more fully drop to my knees and offer prayer on how we can best help this great stake here in Saitama. To every trial there is a purpose, and I'm so excited for this chance to keep learning and growing, and I know that with Heavenly Father, anything is truly possible. :) I was reading recently through D&C 50:40-41 with Elder Shumway, and we realized that it's such a great opportunity to learn and grow, and we're so excited to go forward with faith! Although we can't fully understand every purpose for this trial, we know that it is only upward and onward from here! We told the story of Jonah and the Whale in our meeting, and explained that we've kind of been chewed up and spit out onto the beach, but we have the choice to rush towards Ninevah and teach the Gospel! It's been a way awesome experience learning and growing, and I'm sorry I never said anything about it before. I've never really been a fan of sharing the "hardships" but I just want you to know I'm determined and so excited to keep working hard out of this trial, and press into the smooth waters. :) It's going to be awesome!

The amazing night sky!

Well other than that I just want to say thank you so much for the amazing Nixon watch you sent me! I thought I mentioned it in the past email, but I love love love it! I wear it only at Zone Conferences and President interviews! I've received lots of compliments from it, and I always say MY BELOVED BROTHER PICKED IT OUT FOR ME. ;) Haha, but in all serious I really love it! It's a way nice watch and I'm way excited to make it last! Thank you so much again for that amazing birthday package, it really so awesome, and it made me feel so thankful to have to such an amazing family. :) I love you guys so much, and although I miss you a ton during the holidays, there's nowhere else I'd rather be than right here in Japan. :) I love serving as a missionary with all my heart, and I'm so thankful for the amazing blessings that this time has given me. It's taken my faith and testimony, at times tried it, but always left it stronger, and always a greater desire to do what is right and serve the Lord. I loved Elder Eyring's talk on continuing personal revelation, and I thought about experience after experience that has led me to this time as a missionary. I know that Heavenly Father truly has a plan for all of us, and is always so eager to have us have a happy, joyful life. It's such an amazing blessing to teach this awesome message to the Japanese people, and I'm so thankful to keep going forward with faith! I love guys so much, and I'm so thankful for all of your prayers and kindness. :) Hope you guys have an amazing week, love you!! The book
is blue, the message is true, and God loves you!!!

Elder Justesen

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