Monday, December 29, 2014

Tokyo Japan Week 71

Me and the Hashimoto family!




Yes, my companion has a Ferrari back home.

Hello Awesome Family! Happy Almost New Year! 

Hey everyone! It was so awesome talking to you guys this past week. Just want to say thanks so much for all of the love and kindness on the call, it was so awesome, and a great Christmas Call! As well wow I'm still speechless about Tyler and Alexa! I'm so excited to hear more about what's going on, but I'm so happy for you guys! I'm excited to have some new brothers and sisters, haha. But Christmas this year was pretty amazing! That night we had a lesson with our great investigator Arai, and he said a goal to be baptizedWe may need to reschedule it because of his work schedule, but it was still such an awesome miracle, and the Spirit was so strong during the lesson! Then after we went outside, it started snowing! How incredible is that? It was a true white Christmas, and just overall such an awesome day.

Elder Higashi and me! We work really hard. 


But this past Saturday was really so amazing. I was able to go to Brother Han Bing's baptismal service in Urawa, and it was probably one of the most amazing services I have ever been to. Brother Han bore such a powerful testimony of the faithfulness of Nephi, and he bore testimony of the Book of Mormon, and how much this gospel has blessed his life. He expressed thanks for all of the missionaries, and just his excitement to have an eternal family, and eternal life with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. President Budge actually came and attended the service, and he came up to Elder Shumway and I afterward and said he really believes that Brother Han might be a future stake president, or leader in the church in China! I felt so blessed to have met and taught Brother Han Bing, and I'm so excited for him! We talked for a little bit afterwards, and he's just such an awesome friend. Really love him a lot, and I feel so thankful to have met him! He's a true eternal friend. As well it was so awesome to see all of the Urawa Ward members, and feel of their love!


Brother Umemura, Brother Mizoe, and Brother Futoshi

After the baptism with the Urawa Ward!
Jake and I are pretty thug.
Overall though things are going really awesome! Urayasu Ward is doing pretty amazing, and the Bishop has so much great fire and faith, and it's really looking great! The whole Mikami Kids came to church on Sunday, and I think it was the most adorable group of kids ever, haha. Little Kasumi who is about 4 years old held my hand all throughout the baptismal service after church, and I've been nicknamed by the kids, haha. They all have such an awesome light about them, and you can feel so strongly the love that Heavenly Father has for them. We're working very hard with the Bishop to help them, and the bishop has been bringing them with his family to church each Sunday. We're all praying for a miracle that the parents will give them permission to let them be baptized, and it should be such a cool miracle here in Urayasu! I'm seriously so thankful to be working with Elder Higashi as well! He's such an awesome example to me of faith and diligence, and he's really teaching me so much every day. He's such an awesome companion!

More Urayasu! The view from our apartment

P-Day at the beach!


Brother Han Bing's baptism!


I can't believe that it's coming up to the year 2015! I feel like just yesterday I was starting 2014 in Maebashi with Elder Tu'ua, but it's already the new year! I made some great New Years goals and resolutions, and I included some for after June as well. I'm so so thankful to this year I had to serve completely as a missionary for this great gospel. As I look over the year of 2014, it's been completely amazing! Heavenly Father has truly been so kind, and I'm so thankful for this incredible chance to be serving as a missionary. The time is seriously flying by, but I'm so thankful for this chance to be serving the amazing Japanese people. I love them so much, and I'm so thankful for the chance I have to be serving here in the incredible city of Tokyo! I've really been blessed to make so many great eternal friends, and I'm so excited to go forward with faith, and continue to give this work every effort, and give my whole heart to this country I love so much. I just want to again say thank you guys all so much for the incredible love and examples you set for me. You've all blessed my life so many ways, and I'm so thankful for the amazing family Heavenly Father has blessed me to be apart of. :) I hope you guys all have an amazing New Years, I love you!! The gospel is true, the book is blue, and God loves you!

Love,
Elder Justesen


Monday, December 22, 2014

Tokyo Japan Week 70

Hello Amazing Family!

So sorry today's email will be very short mainly because we will be talking on Thursday! I'm so stoked to talk to you guys, but I just want to let you know I'm really loving Urayasu! It's a really prepared place with so many amazing people. And especially my awesome companion! Elder Higashi is such an amazing missionary, and he's already teaching me so much serving with him. He's been out on his mission for about 4 months now, and it's a blast working with his awesome faith! It's so cool to be here in Urayasu, and I'm loving serving as a missionary with all of my heart!


It's pretty crazy that it's coming onto the 6 months of my mission! I received a letter today concerning the last 6 months of my mission, including my release date. Crazy! I hope it's okay, but the date is actually on June 12! It's pretty intense there's now a specific date, but I'm so so excited to work with every effort to give this last quarter my whole heart! I love serving as a missionary with all of my heart, and I'm so thankful for this incredible chance to be serving the Lord at this time. He's been so incredibly kind and loving to me during this time as a missionary, and I'm so excited to keep going forward with faith! It's been an amazing year and a half.

It sounds like everyone is doing so great, it makes me so happy! I just want to say thank you so much for all of the prayers and love you guys always share with me, I really do appreciate it so much! I love you guys so much, and it's hard not to miss you guys during this Christmas season, but I'm so thankful for this chance to be serving as a missionary. It's blessed and changed my life so much! Leaving Urawa Ward last week was pretty sad, but I'm so thankful for all of the amazing friends that are there. On the last day Brother Futoshi and Brother Han were looking so awesome, and their baptisms will be coming up soon! Also! The Hashimoto Family showed me so much love and kindness, and I'm so thankful for this chance to be serving in Japan. I love being a missionary so much! I'll tell you all more about it on Thursday, it's going to be so awesome! Thanks so much for everything, I love you guys! Talk to you on Thursday!!

Love,
Elder Justesen

Monday, December 15, 2014

Tokyo Japan Week 69

Our view of Mount Fuji!

Hello Amazing Family! I'm way sorry, this email is going to be pretty short, but I've been transferred!! I'm moving down pretty close to Tokyo in an area called Urayasu! I'll be with another awesome Japanese companion named Elder Higashi! I'm so excited to work with him, and I'm so so excited to work really close in Tokyo. It's been seriously big change with all of the Zone Leaders as well, and it's a really big shake up in the mission! It's going to be an amazing Christmas season. :)

Cooking with Elder Shumway is serious business!

Speaking of Christmas! I'm so stoked to talk with all of you guys next week on Skype! It'll be so awesome to see all of you guys, and maybe some other people? ;) Haha, but it's so cool to see how much Heavenly Father is blessing our family, and I'm so excited to talk to you guys! I was thinking we could do just the same as last year and I can call at around 12 in the afternoon Japan time on Christmas Day? If that's okay please let me know! :) I'm so excited to talk to you guys, it's going to be awesome! I can't believe it's already my last Christmas in Japan, but I'm so thankful for this amazing country, and all of amazing blessings it has brought to my life. I love serving as a missionary with all of my heart, and I'm so excited for Urayasu! It's pretty heart breaking to leave all of these amazing people here in Urawa, but I'm so thankful for the amazing 6 months the Lord gave me here. I love Saitama, and I'm for sure going to miss it so much, but I'm so excited to keep going forward with faith, and keep giving this work my absolute whole heart and soul! I love being a missionary!

Yu Matsuhashi and Han!

Us and Han!

A quick update with the people we're working with, Brother Futoshi is getting baptized this coming Saturday! He's been such an incredible miracle, and I'm so thankful for the chance to be his friend, and share this gospel message. He asked that I would baptize him, so I'll be coming back to Urawa Ward on Saturday, and then the next Brother Han will be baptized! He's been such an amazing miracle as well, and he passed his interview with flying colors! After the interview, he said he's been looking for this in his life for so long now, and it made me feel so thankful to have met this amazing friend. I love this work so much, and I'm so thankful for all of the amazing blessings Heavenly Father is sending me. As well the Matsuhashi family is looking so amazing! We had dinner with them last night, and they're continually reading the Book of Mormon as a family, and they've decided that they want to be baptized! No specific date yet, but we're so so thankful for this amazing miracle.

Yu Matsuhashi and the elder!
Ward pot luck!

Well it sounds like everyone is doing so awesome, and I'm so thankful for all of the amazing things that are happening. I know that Heavenly Father lives, and that He loves us so much that He sent His son for us. I love this Christmas season, and I'm so thankful for this chance to be serving as a missionary. This short time has changed and blessed my life in so many incredible ways, and I'm just so thankful to be serving here as a missionary in Tokyo! I love this work with all of my heart. I love you guys so much, and I'll see your faces next week! Haha, Merry Christmas!!

Love,
Elder Justesen

Monday, December 8, 2014

Tokyo Japan Week 68

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Hello Awesome Family!

A view from our apartment!

Wow, I can't believe it's already 2 weeks until Christmas! This December is flying by really so fast, but it's been really so amazing. I'm so excited and thankful for this great opportunity to be serving as a missionary during this special Christmas season, and especially for the chance to be sharing about the true meaning of Christmas. I'm sure you guys have heard all about the "He is the Gift" campaign, it's been going so amazing here in Japan! Missionaries and members are sharing it so much, and it's been so amazing to see the miracles that are coming from sharing that true special meaning of Christmas! I love serving as a missionary with all my heart, and I'm so thankful for this chance to be serving here in Tokyo Japan. I love it!!

Beshounuma Park

Well it sounds like you guys are all doing so awesome! I'm so thankful to hear of the great blessings Heavenly Father is raining down on our family, and I'm so thankful for all of the great things happening! As well I just want to say thank you guys so much for all of the prayers and kind words you always share with me. Recently I was reviewing my setting apart blessing, and there's a portion that talked about being able to feel the prayers that are in my behalf, and I have definitely felt that this week. I'm so thankful for the power of prayer, and the incredible role it is playing right now here in Urawa. Next week will be transfers, and I'm nervous as I'm more than likely heading out of Urawa! It's been an amazing 4 transfers here, and I'm so excited to keep going forward with faith! This past week was pretty busy, but there were also so many amazing miracles as well! I'm really excited to talk about some of them!


Recently we had Mission Leadership Council, and it was really such an awesome learning experience! The sisters of my district in the MTC will actually be heading home next week, and many of them were at this meeting. It was so awesome to see how much we've all grown and increased in faith, and it made me feel so thankful for the amazing people I've had the chance to be serving alongside. There really was such an awesome spirit of unity and love in my MTC district, and although I'm seriously blown away they're heading home, it's been such an awesome experience serving with so many great examples. Speaking of amazing examples, my trainer Elder Hamada is going to become a father right before I come home! I got some information this week that his first baby will be born in May! How incredible is that? It's amazing to see how much things can change in a year and a half! Haha. But anyways, just wanted to share that. :) As well at the Mission Leadership Council, President Budge mentioned he's going to send a lot of the Zone Leaders in that room back to serving as normal missionaries, as he really wants to start training new Zone Leaders, as well as building up for the next great group of missionary leaders. I'm pretty sure that means I might get a break! Haha, it's been such an amazing experience serving as a Zone Leader for the past year, and I'm so excited to go wherever the Lord needs me. I've definitely come to know that serving as a missionary, leadership or no leadership, is the most amazing gift ever, and I'm so thankful for this chance to keep serving wherever the Lord needs me. I love being a missionary so much! It's been the most amazing life changing experience ever, and this week has been especially amazing!

Brother Futoshi's interview

Brother Futoshi had his baptismal interview this past Saturday, and it was such an amazing spiritual experience. He came down the stairs, and when he gave the thumbs up that the interview went great, he burst into tears of joy. He's been searching so diligently to find this answer, and feel that reality of the faith he holds, and it just came full circle the other day. I'm so thankful for Brother Futoshi, and it was such an honor to just give him a big hug as he cried. It's going to be such an amazing service on the 20th, and I know he is someone the Lord has been preparing for such a long time. It's been such an amazing miracle to see how much he has grown in the past 6 months, and I'm so excited for him! As well Brother Han Bing is looking so amazing for the 28th! Brother Han is such an amazing miracle! He attended our English class, said he felt a warm feeling in the church, attended on Sunday, set a baptismal date on that first lesson, and know he's looking so great! Thank you so much for the prayers in his behalf, he's looking so great! Every time we teach him, he's already testifying concerning that lesson, and says things like, "in our church, in our religion, with our belief in God," etc. This past transfer has taught me so much that Heavenly Father will truly do His work, and we just need to give our best effort, and do all we can to be obedient to His will. It's been so amazing! And lastly there's the amazing Matsuhashi Family! I'll write more about them soon, but they've been such an amazing blessing in our life. I love serving in Urawa!

The Matsuhashi family!

But all in all it's been another amazing week having the greatest calling in the world! Serving as a missionary has been the most incredible life changing experience ever, and one I'm truly so thankful for. Today during the temple, I just felt such a strong thankfulness for this chance to be serving, and I'm so excited to keep going forward with faith, and give this work every effort I have! I love this work with all of my heart, and I'm especially thankful for my amazing family, and the incredible examples they set for me. Ever since a young age, you all have always shown me the man and son, father, husband, everything I want to be, snd I'm so thankful for that. One last cool thing! We had a Christmas concert at the mission home, and I got to perform with my great friend Daisuke and Elder Hansen! It was such an amazing experience, and one I'll never forget. We performed Silent Night, and it was such an awesome experience! The Lord has truly been so kind and loving to me, and I'm so excited to go forward with faith! It's been an amazing ride, and the wave is still going! It's gonna be an amazing Christmas. :) Talk to you guys in a couple weeks! Love you!

Love,
Elder Justesen

Monday, December 1, 2014

Tokyo Japan Week 67


Whoa it's already December!

Hello amazing family! It's been another awesome week, and I can't believe it's already December! The time is really flying by so fast, but I'm so thankful for all of the amazing miracles Heavenly Father has been showing us this past week! I'm so thankful this week especially for the chance to be serving in an area as amazing as Urawa. I've made so many amazing friends here, and I'm so thankful for the amazing ward as well. This area really has become really so close to me, and I'm so thankful for all of the amazing things happening near the end of this transfer. I love being a missionary so much!

Urawa Ward missionaries!

Brother Han is looking so great for his baptism! This week he came to church, and had a really great time. He's going to have his interview in the next couple weeks, but right now he's looking so great! Probably on my mission he's been one of the most prepared people I've ever met, and Elder Shumway and I really he feel is going to be a great influence on China! Recently we taught the law of chastity, and he instantly excepted it, and explained that he thinks is this going to be really helpful in China. What was really awesome though, was during his prayer he said thank you for receiving this great message in the name of the gospel, in the spirit was really so strong. He's a really prepared man, and one that Elder Shumway and I both are really thankful to know. He's scheduled to receive baptism on December 28th which is right after the transfer ends, but I'm really praying I'll stay somewhere close so I can come back! Brother Futoshi is looking so great as well! His interview will be this weekend, and he's looking really great! It's been an amazing Ward miracle, and we're so excited to help him join his two friends in the gospel! It's been such a miracle-filled season so far, and I'm really so thankful for all of these amazing blessings Heavenly Father has been showing the Urawa and Saitama Zone.


A very missionary Thanksgiving!

This week we also had Zone Conference! Elder Hansen and I were able to perform our cover of Silent Night and it went pretty awesome! It's been so awesome to be able to keep playing guitar as a missionary, and I'm so excited for this coming Saturday! Elder Hansen and I, and our investigator Daisuke will be playing Silent Night again at the mission home Christmas concert, it's going to be so amazing! Heavenly Father has really been sending so many awesome miracles lately, and I'm so thankful for this chance to be serving here in the Tokyo Mission. He's truly given me so much, and blessed my life in so many amazing ways, and I'm so thankful for this chance to be serving as a missionary. This short time has really changed my life so much, and I'm so thankful to keep going forward with faith!

Out for sushi

Mom I received two packages this week!! I'm so excited to put together this Christmas tree, I'm going to wait until next transfer starts though since I more than likely will be moving. :( It's been 4 transfers now in Urawa, so I think I'll be heading out, but I just want to say thank you so so so much! I'm so thankful for the amazing packages you've been sending. I really feel so much love when I read the letters, see the pictures, etc. Thanks so much Mamma, you're the best. :)

Shohei came to visit today!
Elder Shumway, Daisuke, and me!

Well it sounds like everyone is doing so great and so many great things are happening! I'm way excited to hear how everyone is doing, and I'm so thankful for all of the love and kindness you guys share with me. It's going to be so awesome to talk together in a few weeks! I just want to say I love you guys so much, and just thank you for being the most amazing family ever. It's been not always easy being away from you guys for so long, but I'm so thankful for the love and kindness, and especially the amazing examples that you all have set for me.

Apartment shenanigans 


Last night I had another dream about tyler! Haha, sorry man. But yeah, you and I were companions in Tokyo, and you were proclaiming to all of the Brazilians, and I was to all the Japanese people, it was such a cool dream! Haha, I woke up feeling thankful for my awesome brother, and I just want to say thanks, man. I love you a ton, and I'm so thankful for the great example you have always, and continue to set for me. You've blessed my life a ton, and I just want to say thanks! You're an awesome priesthood hero to me.

FHE!
Elder Ishikawa  
A Camaro SS!

Well I have to get running on with the P-day, but I love you guys so much! Thank you so much always for the prayers, and the love and kindness. I love you guys a ton, and I can't wait to talk with you again in just a few weeks! It's going to be an amazing Christmas season, and I'm so thankful for the chance to be serving here in the amazing country of Japan. This amazing country continues to change my life so much, and I'm so thankful for the blessings Heavenly Father has given me in my life. Have an amazing week, love you all so much!!

Love,
Elder Justesen