Monday, June 16, 2014

Convenience stores, rich houses, bunpei, and member testimonies

We started off this week talking to T san. She is a wonderful person. We talked to her about how she felt during church and she said it was a warm happy feeling. We were able to testify to her that that was the spirit testifying to her. We started the plan of salvation and related it to a test with a teacher, and study material. It really hit home with her and she is starting to recognize the need for prayer and other basic church teachings. But she, like most Christians, believes that God is a spirit so we ended with that and said that we would explain more on a different day.

Tuesday passed by because we had a zone training meeting and didn't get home until 6. We talked to a man who said we could come back on Sunday and then we went to N san. Elder Knighton made some rolls and we brought that to her. She was super happy and gave us some Thailand candy.... which isn't the best but still it was very kind of her.

Wednesday we tried to have an appointment but the person wasn't home so we went to a less active bunpei. He told us on Monday (he took us shopping for some reason) that he didn't like the church for a bunch of reasons. First off he asked me if we could buy him food. I told him the money we have is for missionary purposes only so if he wanted the church to buy something, it would have to be through the Branch President. He said the Branch President is a liar and that the church isn't led by Christ because he always gave to the poor.

Ironically enough, he has a free car with unlimited gas and miles. He lives with his parents. In his room (which we helped clean up on Wednesday) he has a big tv, game-cube, and a play-station 3. He isn't poor. He doens't know how to control his money.

But he told us the story of how the Branch President lied to him saying that there was a rule. But according to bunpei, that rule doesn't exist, therefore making him a liar. We brought up forgiveness and asked him if he knew the story in the bible about forgiveness.  (A little backup info, bunpei believes only the words of Jesus are correct so only the 4 gospels are correct.... a little weird. He also takes things literally so he twists the doctrine a lot.) Saying if you don't forgive, you wont' be forgiven. He said, lets meet on Monday to talk more about it.

Thursday we went to sign language class, I love the deaf members here. I can kind of communicate with them but mostly I have to write everything down. I know a little bit of sign language, enough to get by. We went and dendoed a bit and dropped by U but she was in the shower so we returned home.

Friday we had a day full of finding in different places planned. The first place we went, I saw this nice looking house and said to Knighton "the rich love the gospel!" I said it in a joking manner but it turned out to be a great contact. It was a lady by the name of N. She went to the English class held by the elders over 30 years ago. She still remembers a lot about the elders. We asked her if she learned anything about the gospel. She said no. We asked her if we could explain some things. She said yes. So we pulled some stools outside. Se talked for over an hour about the gospel. Most people say since there is suffering in the world there can't be a God. She had the same opinion but we explained how only in this life we have suffering, and if he have hope through Jesus Christ, we can experience joy for eternity. She seemed to accept that and we asked if we could meet at church on Sunday. She said "shall we meet there?" It was great!

We went from there and had a great lesson with E. She loves stories so we chose to tell her the story of Enos in the Book of Mormon and how he got an answer to prayer. She really recognized the principal behind it and we gave her homework of Alma 22:7-23 and asked her 4 questions to think about when she read it.
1. From the gospel what good things can we receive. Is this what the king wanted when he asked Arron his question?
2. What did Arron say back?
3. What did the king do.
4. How can we apply this?
She said she will do it and we will meet tomorrow.

Saturday is a long day of explanation. Long story short we had a lesson with K at the church after he came to eikaiwa. We wanted to talk to him after but one of the eikaiwa students recognized it and stayed after to prevent it. It turns out the student called us out on why we believe in God. It turned out really well actually and in the end it went from I can't believe you believe God, why do you believe in God, to us saying to the student, after all of things testifying of God, why do you not believe in Him? K sat through the whole thing and seemed to drink it in. At the end he said he believes our church was true.... but all peoples beliefs are true as well. We will get going on that. But afterwards we went with K and another college student to get ice cream. It was super fun!!!

Sunday! T came to church! N didn't but still T came to church. It's really important too because she has been receiving a lot of opposition from her sister who goes to a different Christian church. But T said "no, I'm going to continue listening to these people." Great faith she has!!! We went around to visit some people we haven't seen in a while and to house more. We gave a Book of Mormon to a college kid on the street telling him he could receive guidance from God. We went on our way but after 2 hours when we were housing... we found him again. It was super awkward but we just talked to him about his life and got to know him more.

We went to the bathroom at a 7-11 and Elder Knighton was standing on the other side of the store. I said "hey elder, its time to go." He didn't hear me but the cashier spoke to me in English saying "he probably didn't hear you" in perfect English. I turn to her and said "what did you say?" It turns out this lady was a second generation Japanese American who was bilingual who went to a Christian college in America. So she called us by the actual title of our church, not Mormons. The LDS title... in English. It blew my mind. What is even more awesome is that her minor in college was religious ethics. Come on. Seriously? Who knew going to a convenience store on the Sabbath would yield something great? We gave her a chirashi and hopefully she will come in contact again.

Monday. We met with bunpei again. He has a big problem with the law of tithing. Since he only believes in the 4 gospels, he says it is not needed. We showed him that through all the books (Old Testament, New Testament, Book of Mormon, Doctrine & Covenants) we gain God's gospel. Not just Jesus' gospel. We showed him in the Old Testament the law of tithing. He then said that the president of the church and the apostles glut themselves on the labors of the church. We pulled Korihor's example from the Book of Mormon and he said the same thing. But Alma said, we don't receive anything from the church. Being able to work with Elder Cherrington was a great opportunity. He has met a lot of the First Presidency and has eaten at their house since his dad was a member 70. I told bunpei that I believed Elder Cherrington when he said they live normal lives and don't glut themselves on the people.  He asked, "is it okay if I believe you?" I was confused but he asked again. I said, "yes I know this is true." He is looking good.

We met T san last night. It was a great lesson. We wanted to rest anything that was harming her relationship with her sister so we explained simply what the church was compared to other churches. We said that in a classroom setting you have a teacher and a textbook. How would she feel if the teacher randomly went away? How would she feel if other kids in the class drew in the book, crossed things out, and tore out pages? She said, "well I have had that in school so I would be confused. I wouldn't know how to study." We said that's what happened when Jesus died. People did that to the church and the bible. But how would you feel if a new teacher came in the room saying he has a new book that will help us understand the old one better, and it will help us pass the test?" She said "I would feel happy." We said, that is what the prophet Joseph Smith did when he translated the Book of Mormon. It really hit home with her. With that we told her that it also restored things like how God had a body. Se showed her the scripture in D&C 130. She freaked out and said "it's unbelievable!" Then turned to the member and asked, "Is this true?" and the member said, "yes it is." I know through the power of God that the testimony of that member entered into her heart. I believe she started to believe the doctrine of God having a body. She did ask a hard question of "where does God live?" The best I could do is say heaven and that we don't know exactly where that is. We also testified that we would be resurrected. using scriptures from the bible we taught her. Things are going well!

Jameson choro

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