Wow, what a week. Lots happened and it was a great week. Let's just go down the list then.
Tuesday, we were invited to perform a Tahitian Dance for patients in a hospital. That was super fun! Thanks to Chapman Shimai for being Tahitian and knowing how to dance. Check out the pictures and videos for more on that. It was a really fun service and the members who were involved were grateful that we did that.
On Thursday, we were invited to watch the Worldwide Missionary Broadcast for all of the missionaries in the world. It was the first time the church has done something like this for 10 years, so I thought something big was happening. Well, nothing too big happened, but we were able to be trained by the Missionary Executive Committee about how to be better missionaries. They talked a lot about how we are representatives of Jesus Christ, so we should always "Have Your testimony of Christ on your lips." Always be prepared to testify of Christ to everyone you meet and in every lesson you teach. We were also taught about the importance of the Spirit in all we do as missionaries. The main thing that they relayed to us is a phrase that I love now. "We teach repentance and baptize true converts." That is what we do as missionaries. Everyone needs to repent and we as missionaries are constantly repenting ourselves and helping others to repent. It was a great opportunity to hear from our Church Leaders.
I will be bold and say that Friday, the whole course of my mission has changed. We were blessed to have Elder Yoon Hwan Choi of the Asia North Area Presidency here to talk to us. He is a bold man. We talked about many, many things and he basically called us all to repentance. The interesting thing was though that he did it all with incredible love. I felt no resentment and no negative feelings, only love and a desire to repent and do better.
We talked about elevating our thoughts. He basically said that the reason people don't succeed is because of their thoughts. If our thoughts aren't high enough, then we will never get to where we want to be. He related that to our baptism numbers. Recently, our baptism numbers haven't improved. So, he posed a question. "How many of you put a 1 in number of baptism goal this week?" Nobody rose their hand. He said, "There you go guys, that's why you aren't baptizing." He then talked about how if we don't think we can baptize, then we won't. But, if we think we will baptize, then we will. Then he asked President Welch what he thought about this. He said "you know, I think our baptism goal of 1 per month (as a companionship) is not what the Lord wants us to do. I think it's too low." Elder Choi nodded and said, "yup, that's right." Then he said how he knows that we can do better than 1 baptism per month. So, we raised the baptism goal to 1 BAPTISM PER WEEK. (Per companionship). Woah! When that happened, I felt a confirmation that that said, yes, we can do it. I know that this is what the Lord wants for the Japan Kobe Mission right now. I don't know how it will happen, but miracles will happen and God's power is going to show here in this land. It all starts with positive thinking and faith. One thing that Elder Choi said was how we can change our destiny. It goes like this: Thoughts-->Actions-->Habits-->Character-->Destiny. Our thoughts lead to our destiny. Our destiny is to become like Jesus Christ, for he said "what manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am." (3 Nephi 27:27) if our thoughts are centered on Christ, we will one day be like him. Perfected. Free from the natural man.
This goal is pretty crazy to be honest. I don't even know if missionaries in Mexico get one baptism a week. But, I have a testimony that the Lord is hastening his work all throughout the world. He is preparing people to hear the gospel and the work is rolling forth. I am beyond excited to see the church grow here in Japan. It starts now. It starts with me. It starts with each individual missionary and the way they view missionary work. Don't fear. Don't be shy. Have faith. It will happen. I know that it will and I will do everything I can to make it work. We cannot do it on our own though. We need all the help we can get. We always have the Lord's help if we are worthy for it. We also need the help of each member. We are all part of this great work.
Yesterday, we had ward council and I told them boldly about the goals that the Lord has set for this mission. I testified how I know that this will happen because this is the Lord's work and his desire for Japan. It felt really good to be the instrument for Him during this ward council. I promised them that I will work hard to accomplish this goal and asked for their help.
I only have 7 months left on this mission. I will do all I can to accomplish what Heavenly Father wants me to do. I testify that the work that all 80,000 or so missionaries are doing is being guided and lead by God himself. I know that Jesus Christ is at the helm and that he is guiding his sheep to the missionaries. I am so proud and so happy to be on a mission. It's hard, it's exhausting both physically and mentally, but I know it is worth it. I know that the leaders of our church are called by God and they are the instruments of God. Everything they do is what He wants to have happen in this world. He lives. Faith is a principle of action and power. If you act on faith, always having God in your thoughts, you will always be happy. No matter what your circumstances are, seek the will of God, and all will be right. Trust him.
Have a great week everyone! I am so grateful for all of your love and support. 宜しくお願いします。
Elder Lamoreaux ラムロー長老
Japan Kobe Mission 日本神戸伝道部
Yup, that's right. Sister Chapman is from Tahiti and she is really good at Tahitian dancing. Because of that, a member wanted us to perform a Tahitian Dance for the patients in her husband's hospital. (The same place that we did Santa for.) Those of you who know me know I cant's dance. But, I tried and it was really fun. Made a lot of mistakes, but they were all old, so they didn't care too much about the mistakes. One of those experiences I won't forget anytime soon.
|Happy Birthday Omisaki Shimai!|
|Visiting a member on a companionship exchange. They fed us Tempura Udon.|
|Visiting another member that same day. The son is preparing to get baptized and we were invited to teach him about Tithing and Fasting.|