This week me and Lundstrom Shimai gave out first church tour! We were a little nervous since neither of us have done one yet, and it started out a little rough but in the end I think it turned out ok. :) Our investigator, Sakuyama San, she is 40 years old and she is married and has the cutest little girl ever, who is only 4 months old. We haven't been able to meet with her a ton, becuase first of all she is a new mother, and second her work schedule is very.... Ok I can't think of what the word is, but it's very easy to change so she basically never knows when she is working until the day of. But she didn't have work on Wednesday morning, which was perfect for us! She came to the church and it was funny becuase she called us saying she couldn't find a church and then when she finally found it she said that it didn't even look like a church, I didn't really understnad that, I mean it's a brick building with a steeple! There's nothing else like it in Japan! Haha. :) We also had a member there, Haruki Shimai, so that she could help us explain church a little bit more. I was so grateful she was there! It's really great having members, so that when my Japanese doesn't make sense, there's someone there to help me out! Our tour ended in the chapel. We explained to her about the sacrament and why it's important. She thought it was all very interesting, but the best part was at the end. We asked her what she thought and what she was feeling and she said that she had a good, warm feeling when she was inside the church! It was a good moment!
Our next step with her is actually getting her to come to one of our church meetings. So she told us the next time that she doesn't have work that she can probably come! I'm so excited! I'll keep you updated on when she comes to church.
I know that it is so important as a missionary to have the member's trust. I always wonder what it's like for missionaries in America, because I can bet that it's a completely different experience than it is here. I think when missionaries visit member's homes, the members should know what the missionary's purpose is there. It's not just to bond with the member (which is important) but they should always be asking for referrals! Becuase our purpose as missionaries is to find people and then to teach them. You can ask the missionaries who they are teaching. Ask them if they need a member to sit with their investigator at church. Ask them if they need a member to come to their lesson. TEAM UPS ARE THE BEST THINGS EVER - having a member present at a lesson. I know that especially here in Japan, if I can't explain something super well in Japanese it's so nice to have the member to back up what I'm saying and to give their own personal experience. Now that I've been a missionary I feel like once I get back home I am going to try to be such a better member missionary, becuase I know how important members are in this work. We really can't do it without the members. I think it was presidnet HInckley who said that every convert needs 3 things: a responsibility, feast upon the words of the scriptures, and they need a friend -- or something like that. People want to feel included and connected to others and the only way investigators are going to have that is if they actually know the members!! And how are they going to know the members?? If the members are there to help them along their own conversion process! :) Becuase as missionaries we leave and transfer to other places, but the members are the ones who stay.
Hope you are all doing well. Have a wonderful week!
Ai shite imasu!!