It is crazy to think, but Kurt is home from Japan!!!
It is so good to have him home, safe and sound. I am excited to spend more time with him :)
I hope he adjusts back to home life okay. And that he finds as many opportunities to use his gift of Japanese!! What a blessing and what a treat he is :D
We love Kurt!!!!!
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Well i dont know where to start. I think first ill comment on your email. HOLY CRAP!!! Janalyn had her baby!!! THats nuts. I thought i would be there when she had navy.Dang it. Do you realize when i come home that there will be 3 new members of the family that i have never met before? I am glad taht Janalyn is doing good and that all is well. Ill pray for them. WHen did Sam get home? Holy crap. He is already home and will be living in our home when i get home. Tlak aobut a blessing. Im glad that he'll be there when i get home. It'll hlep so much. I love him too. About the rooms, i can really careless on which room i get. Maybe the bigger one will be cool. Anything will be better than what i am living in right now. haha. But ya. i am excited to see him. Hiro is still in the hospital. I doubt that he will be released before my mission is over. But keep praying for him.
So my week was pertty good i quess. I know that the Lord is acceptign my service becasue on Tuesday we found 3 new gators. we met the smartest guy in Japan and ALex. The smartest guy in Japan claims that he is the smartest and is actually very intellectual. He spoke to us for 45 minutes in all english and he was saying words bigger than what i knew. He used to teach at some universities here in Japan and in London. He is a super nice guy but we cant get ahold of him becasue he is moving back to london next month and has no phone. But he usually calls us. So we shall see whats up with him. ALex is super cool. He is from AMerica and he really reminds me of Justin. He is just super laid back and understands us. He came to church yesterday and enjoied himself. We are going to meet him tomorrow and plan a huge bike ride. He doesnt have a job and bikes everywhere so i wnat to do a big one before i leave japan. So we are going to plan one. haha. It will be fun. We will also talk to him about church stuff. Dont worry. But ya. ON Friday we had a zone conference and it was actually pretty good but they talked aobut alot of stuff that want really apply to me anymore. Like missionary records, baptismal records, and finding. It was pretty funny. a AP who is on his 10th transfer was talking aobut te new way to fill out baptismal records and stuff. Everybody was writing it down and i wasnt cuz i am going home and will never do that again. WEll, he looked at me and asked, "arent you going to write it down?' My reply was "no". It was pretty funny i htink. But ya. It was a good training. I had to give my last testimony in front of missionaries. IT was pretty good. Pres. Budge asked for a copy of it. But i really love my mission and am going to miss it alot. I am excited to talk about it more with you guys when you are here. Saturday was way fun. Soko, one of my recent converts,came to Yamate and took us out to lunch. He is goin to China on the 1st of February and we wont see eachother again before i leave so he wanted to hang out before we depart. It was super fun and i really enjoied it. We had some good talk and it was just really fun. It meant alot to me to spend that time with him. I love him alot. Yesterday was pretty tiring acutally. After sacrament, i went back to an area i served in over a year and 1 month ago. It is called Kawagoe. I was only lthere for 1 transfer and i thought it was just a really cruddy transfer teaching and finding wise. Well i quess i was wrong. It was a seed planting tranfer because yesterday there was a baptism. A man named Asai got baptized. He met me and my comp on 28 November 2011 on the street and only talked to us for about 20 min. He told us he had no interest but we got his phone number. Well 10 weeks ago the elders called him and since then he has been going to church and yesterday he got baptized. When i walked into the the room, Asai totally lightened up and he was excited that i came. He really enjoied it as well as me. I got to stand in his conformation circle. I was really suprised that the ward remembered me. They all remembered my name and that i was a cowboy. haha. THe bishop still doesnt like me for some reason. haha. But it was a good day. I love seeing the fruit of the labor. Especially when you planted the seed. Today has been pretty chill. We had some mexican food and then went window shopping. I have to figure out stuff i want to get before i leave Japan. But i just feel weird becasue it doenst feel like my mission is going to end. I have to start thinking about that stuff so when you guys come i can be prepared. But that was my week pretty much. Nothing special. Last night we walked down this main street but it was not a good street. Almost the whole way we just saw signs on front of doors that said, if you arent 18 you cant enter. It was like the Red Light District of Las Vegas but in Japan. It was pretty sad. We actually got waved down by some pimps to go into there house. It is pretty sad. Thats why we dont go there very often. I am on my last 2 weeks. The week after next i will see you guys. So CRAZY!!! I am actually pretty nervous to see you guys. I havent talked to you in real life in 2 years. Do you realize that? that is weird to me. But i am super excited.
ok about the trains. So you go everywhere in Tokyo by trains. I have my own train pass but i use the money that the church gives to me. So when my mission ends, i wont have that money. You said that the NEX and Suica package is good but i think the other one is better. YOu will need much more than 2000 yen for extra travel if you get the NEX package. We will be using JR lines most of the time. But if i were you, i would get the one that costs $299.00 per person. If you do that, we can go anywhere we wnat. Its unlimited. The NEX package one i htink is to and from the airport with 2000 extra yen. That isnt very good as in we will be going everywhere by trian. That is my personal opinoin. President Budge also said that exchanging your money at the airport is your best bet. But just to let you know, you cna use credit cards here in Japan. Not all stores take them, but alot of them do. I know that we really need to plan this trip so i will prob. check my email 2-3 of times a week to answer questions you might have A.S.A.P..
I love you so much mom and dad. I am so excited for you guys to come here. You will love it i am sure. I am also sure you will see things that you dont agree with and will be very suprised. The dress is very different. Just warning you. If you have any questions or anything, please let me know. I dont know the office email, but i will give you Sister Budges email address. You can talk things over with her. it is firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope you guys can get things fiqured out. Sorry i cant hlep to much. Im still a missionary and dont know to much about stuff. That is part of my calling. haaha. I love you.
Monday, January 21, 2013
Ok so first things first. I am going to talk a little about Japan and your questions. I know that you want to bring people gifts and stuff and i was wondering, are you bringing 2 suitcases and a carryone bag? If you are doing that, you should have plenty of room to bring some stuff. As for Jenny, i think a really cool picture of Jesus Christ would be cool. She doesnt have any in her home and i am sure that would mean alot to her. As for Elder Chen, your bet is as good as mine is. I havent been in AZ for 2 years and i cant think of stuff he would want. Maybe something that had to deal with rattlesnakes or something. I have no idea. I bet he will love it though. I was also wondering if you could bring some other small things from AZ. I want to give some members that i have gotten really close too some things from AZ.
Yamate is actually very far from the Airport. About 3 hours. Its on the opposite side of the mission. But your hotel is in the middle of the mission and about 45 minutes from Yamate. Dont worry about getting to your hotel. I have a webpage that pulls out all the train schedules and everything. It is www.hyperdia.com. you will leave from Narita Airport Terminal # and arrive in Shinjuku. I am more worried about when you get to shinjuku. Shinjuku is one of the largest train stations in Japan and it is very easy to get lost in that train station. But everybody speaks english so they will help. Especially the workers. About money, i dont know how much money to bring. I do know that Japan is a very expensive country. My quess would be $8,000. I would ask Sister Budge or President Budge about that though. Like i said before, i have lived year for 2 years so i am accustomed to all the prices and everything. YOu guys wont be. So everything will be expensive for you even though it looks cheap to me. Also, i would ask Sister Budge or President Budge on where to exchange money at. I have no clue. My quess is at the airport but if you did that and you dont spend all the money then it seems like a waste. I would ask them. Sorry i cant help you too much on that part. I do speak on Sunday. I not only speak but me and my comp have a special number that we will be singing. So you will be lucky to hear it. I think that they want Dad to give a 2-3 min testimony or talk too. haha. I am fine with giving my farewell talk on the 17th. Whenever is ok. I dont really care. I sent you some ideas on things we oculd do while you are here and 2 weeks ago i sent an eamil with a pre-plan thing.What are your thoughts on that? I really need to hear what you guys think about stuff. Just let me know. I am so excited to introduce you to my new home and all the expirences that i have had in the past 2 years. You will be very suprised. Oh, one last thing. Is your iPhone going to work here in Japan? If it does, i cna email you guys when you get here. Just let me knwo. It should becasue it can use internet and stuff like that.
My week was very suprising actually. I am being richly blessed by teh Lord right now. A couple of weeks ago i told you that i had 3 major things i wanted to focus on this transfer. That was getting a baptism, getting my converts back to Church, and helping my companion. Well I have come to the conclusion that the Lord wants me to help my companion. I feel that i probably wont see a baptism in my current area because if that was the case, i couldnt focus on my companions needs which are huge. The Lord is watching out for me though. THis weekend 2 of my previous investigators, Anthony- the guy from Africa, and Hosokawa- the first guy i talked to on the street a couple of weeks ago, both got baptized.
Anthony got baptized on the US Navy base and we were able to go to that. It was AWESOME. Really funny story though. THe base doenst have a LDS church but they do have a non denominational church there. That church let us use there baptismal font to baptize him. It was funny baptizing somebody into our church in a different church. But it was a great service to watch. Afterwards we enjoied Taco Bell. first time in 2 years. IT was amazing and the best ordering expierence in mylife.
Hosokawa's baptism was difentaly the most interesting baptismal service i have ever been too. We read some scriptures from the Bible and then he would play some church songs on his guitar and then more scriptures from the Bible. IT was like a church service for a non-LDS chruch. I thought it was interesting but i am sure God was happy becasue His son was following Christ example and using the talents that He had blessed him with. It was cool and different. What is even greater is that Hosokawa asked me to baptize him. So i got to baptize him. So i got to see 2 baptisms on my last transfer. I dont think that is the end either. I got a call on SUnday and a guy that i stopped and talked to aobut hte gospel over 1 year ago is getting baptized this upcoming sunday and he wants me to be in attendance. So we will go to that. ALso, Hiro called on SUnday and he wants to be baptized before i go home becasue he wants me to baptize him. He is in the Hospital and is very sick. He cant leave unless he is well. Please pray for him that he will be better. He really wants to meet you and dad and take you to some places. YOu remember Hiro right?
I believe that the Lord really wants me to focus on Elder Allred. He really needs help and if we had investigators, i wouldnt be able to give all my attention to him. This is a bit different kinda work than the rest of my mission has been but i really think it will hlep so many. I really need your prayers. We are making great progress and he is getting better but we still have a long ways. I honestly can tell that the Lord is accpeting my service and work whether it be with investigators or helping my compaion get a stronger testimony. If he didnt, i odnt think i would be seeing all these baptisms. It is hard work though. I feel like i am wasting time when i am working with Elder Allred becasue i am not streeting or housing, but the Lord knows that Elder ALlred really needs the help and the Lord is ok with me taking time to help Elder ALlred. I think that is why things are going slow. To help ELder Allred. We were streeting the other day and a guy told us that we were different than everybody else on teh street. Not because we are white but becasue our faces were shiniing. He could tell that our coutenance was different than other people. That is another reason why i believe that the Lord is accepting my service right now. I am being really blessed. I am so grateful for it. I love my mission so much. I never thought it would turn out this way. I have been so successful not just in seeing baptisms and helping others coming to Christ but being filled with the Spirit and filling the joi that comes from service. The past 2 years have truly been the happiest 2 years of mylife. I am so grateful that i decided to come and stay on my mission. I really feel mylife has been blessed from it forever.
I love you mom and dad so much. I am so excited to see the both of you. You better be ready for the best adn most wild expirence of your life. Japan is really different than america in many ways. When you come, i want you to meet all my companions. Mom has kept in touch with some of them and they want to meet. SO i want to go out to eat with them. I hope you dont mind. Well, i dont know what else to say. I am happy, healthy and doing great. Oh, today we went to the biggest sitting Buddha in asia i think. That was pretty cool. I am planning on taking you there. SO be ready. I love you guys. I am excited to hear from ya next week.
Monday, January 7, 2013
Man i wish i would of got this email out to you earlier. There has been a huge change in my mission. I got transfered. And so did Elder Call. Quess where i went? I went back to my old area in Yamate. This will be my 5th transfer here. I was so happy. I am also companions with an Elder i lived with in Urayasu for 3 transfers, Elder Allred. We are great friends. I am way scared though. He isnt the most diligent missionary and is really easy going. I can totally see us doing great things but missing out on some oppurtunites if we arent doing our best. I am way scared for that cuz this is my last transfer too. I can see me not trying m hardest. But I have made a resolve that i want to do my best. I also want my new comp to come to love his mission as much as i love mine. I really like him alot and i dont want anyting bad in between us. I was sad when i got transfered here. I walked in the door and the apartment was filthy. I had worked so hard to keep it clean before but when i gto tranfered, the other elders didnt clean it and what not. Some missionaries are just missing out on the growing oppurtunities found on the misison. For example, most missionaries think that since they are only in an area for 3-6 months, they dont need to clean. SO most of them dont. THey are going to suffer when they get married and live on there own. This is one lesson that i have come to love on my mission. I know it will help me so much when i come home. Needless to Say, i spent a couple of hours cleaning the apartment. It looks like it was when i was here. no worries.
So it pretty much hit me that i am on my last transfer. i have like 40 days left in my mission. It also accured to me that i cna have permission to bend some rules. Like there is some stores that i am not aloud in becasue it will drag away focus. Only missionaries on their last transfer can go in. But i dont have any money, i cant pull any out because my card expired, and i have no desire to go in to those stores. I also dont want to loose focus. I fasted on sunday that i will be able to see a baptism before i go home. I really wnat one. But ya. It hit me that i do need to start seeing more of Japan and gettign more cool stuff but i just dont have the money. Ill figure something out. But ya. How cool is it tha ti am back in Yamate. WHen you guys come to visit it will be so nice because i will already be here and you can see where i am at in like 1 day. It is AWESOME!!! Such a big blessing. I am going to miss Elder Call so much though. I love him so much. He is one of my favorite companions. I am also going to miss being in a 4 man apart. They are so much fun. Not much else to say. I am a bit scared of this upcoming transfer. I have so many good memories here in Yamate. I dont want to make bad ones. haah. I love this place so much. Walking down the streets and wnat not bring back so many good memories that i miss so much. It brings me to tears becasue it makes me so happy and i loved it so much. Oh talking aobut lod things, ELder Crowther became AP. You should send him an email and let him know how much i love him. Elder Chen is in the same ZOne as Elder Crowther and ELder Call is in the area right above Elder Crowther. So when you guys come it will be super easy to see all of them and go out to eat with them. THat is one thing i want to do. I want you to meet all my companions and go out to eat with them. I really wnat that. ELder Hansen is the only far one. But we will fiqure something out. Well i have not to much else to say except i love you. I am so grateful for you. I really am. I loved our phone call last week. It was great. Japan doesnt do to much expect drink and party for new years. Except here in Yamate people go to the bay and watch the sunrise. THe y go as couples. I didnt go because i have another longterm goal, working out and getting in shape for coming home. I ran 3.5 miles today and i am going to look amazing when you see me. I do have pictures from the sunrise thing. So no worries. I love you mom and dad. Ill talk to you next week.
Better to BURN out than to fade away. . .
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Why hello there? This email has been like the best email since a couple of week ago. THey were getting shorter and shorter. But you have Bug to worry about now so now worries. I will see you in 2 months anyways. But ya, loved your email. It was very good to read and see how everything is changing at home. Life will be so different when i come home. It is kinda overwhelming for me. Thats why i dont like thinking about it. It doesnt make me trunky but overwhelmed.
So my week was like a Roller Coaster. It was fast, had ups and downs, and it even made me a bit sick. I dont know where to start. Ill tell you about Hiro. So last monday we went to dinner with him. We were planning on tecahing him hte Word of Wisdom but our member didnt show up. So we werent sure on wat to teach him, so we just decided on the Law of Chastity. At dinner he told us that he was planning on proposing to his girlfriend and goign to ask her to live with him. Man God is a smart man on telling us to teach the Law of Chastity. Thats exactly what we did and he took it super well. IT was eazy for him to say yes. However the proposal didnt go so well. The girl told him taht they were never dating, that she wasnt going to marry him, and that she didnt even like him. He took it pretty hard. I felt way bad becasue on Tuesday we were way packed. We had to do study, lessons, mogi's, and then a lesson with hiro at 8 about the WOW. Well he called at about 11:30 while we were in study nad wanted to meet because he was heartbroken. My mind thought was that Elder Call needs study and we have a appointment with hiro at 8, so i told him we couldnt meet him until 8. Luckily at the church, was a relief society activity and he was able to read the Book of Mormon and pray inside the church like he wanted too. They even had aCurry which is his favortie food and invited him to eat with them. He called back saying he had become happy. he canceled the lesson at 8 because he was able to go to the church. Then on Wednesday we had an appointment with him at 2 about the WOW. He called and wanted to meet a bit earlier but we had another lesson at 12:30 and about 30 minuets away on bike. So i told him we couldnt meet until 2. He called again at 12 and said that he appreciated all that we had done for him, but he is buddhist and wasnt going to be mormon. Then hung up the pohne. I couldnt get ahold of him all day. I had fasted for him too becasue we were going to teach The WOW. That night i just thought about if i really loved him. I felt horrible. This is the sick part. I have 2 months left of my mission, it is christmas time, and i really want to see a baptism. I felt like i was focused more on the number than i was with the person in front of me. It is horrible. I have already commited to myself that if any investigator wants to meet at a time that doesnt break rules, i am going ot meet with them. I learned a way valuable lesson. Especially for after my mission when i become a father. I cant describe how bad and quilty i felt. I felt that i had let God down on not showing love to this soul. I have repented and now trying to do better. Good thing God loves us and gives us chances. Hiro called Wednesday night and we were able to apologize and set up a time to meet him. We baked him a cake in our rice cooker and took it to him and just talked wit him on Thursday. I felt so bad that i just wanted to talk with him and become his freind more. Thats exactly what we did. he really enjoied it too. On Sunday he came to Stake Conference and even stayed for the Christmas Devotional. Then we were able to talk about Prophets and their purpose in the Church. After he had given golden answers, we were able to teach teh Word of Wisdom finally. He commited to it with no problem. He had told us he had always wanted to quit since he was 13 but never had a motive or reason but now he does. He just kept saying it was the best day of his life. He is really going to need your prayers. Smoking is a huge problem for him. He is ready to be baptized now that he has commited to the Word of Wisdom. Please pray that he will not fall into temptation. He is a awesome guy and will make a great member. He is way excited to meet you guys. haha.
Other interersting things of the week: On wednesday, a girl called asking aobut our English Class and wanted to come but didnt know the way. We offered to go pick her up at the train station. Well turned out to be that the girl was a stripper. SO we picked up a strippper and took her to Englsih. Dont worry, she wasnt in bad clothes when we picked her up. Just thought it was funny. Oh on Friday night at about 5:20 we felt a 7.3 earthquake. THat was pretty cool. Evwerything was rattling and waving around. It was pretty awesome. Our 2 afrikan investigators are doing well. One of them found a job and wants to be baptized now that he has a income and a place to live. The other, not yet so please pray for him. His name is Fred. On saturday night after Stake Conference, a member drove us home and decided to take a de-tour. We ended up seeing all these really cool sites in Japan at night. Ginza, Akihabara, Tokyo Dome. It was super cool adn way pretty with the christmas lights and everything. We didtn get home until like 10:45. It was super funny though because he totally took a different route than when we went to the stake center. haha. It was suerp fun. Ya. That was my week. The biggest #1 learned lesson for me was that people are people not numbers. They need love and comfort. I am a missionary and will give it to them when they need it. It really opened my eyes for when i am a father. It scared me.
Oh one last thing. I am way scared about coming home. I htink i tell you this every week. This week i had a hard time falling asleep at night. I dont like coming home at night anymore becasue another day is over and one day closer to leaving Japna. The thought of leaving Japan is really sad to me. I love it here so much. I love speaking Japanese or at least thinking I can. I am way scared to come home and not speak anymroe. I have thought about a couple ideas that will help me though, i just dont know if those ideas can happen. But ya. I dont like reminicing about my area's or where i served becasue i have so many good memories and i have to leave the place where i made them. It is very sad to me. I think it will be harder to leave Japan than it was to leave America and home.
WEll i love you mom. I am excited to see you and show you the place, experiences, people, tastes, etc. taht i have had in the past 2 years. You are going to love it. I told dad but you are going to need to let me know things you want to do, eat, and buy so i can plan accordingly. I only have 2 months left and i know that it will go by super fast. SO i want to start planning what we are going to do. Just let me knwo. I hope you have a great week. I sure love you. I am healthy, happy, and doing great.