So it's been a little bit of a painful week! In Muroran we're pretty lucky because we really don't have a lot of snow, but the bad thing is that right when the snow starts to melt a little bit, it gets super cold and freezes. This week was especially bad and right now we probably have about 2 inches of ice on all the sidewalks! It's really funny because everyone walks like penguins to keep from falling (including us...). But I did manage to fall at least 5 different times this week! and I have all the bruises to prove it and what's even worse is that 2 times I fell right in the middle of the road. So I just hear Kuroki Shimai from the other side of the street yelling, "Kuruma! Kuruma!" (Car! Car!). So I quickly got up and ran so that I wouldn't get hit! Anyway, needless to say we live a pretty exciting/dangerous life as missionaries! :)
And to explain the other reason why this week was painful I must tell you a story now.
So we have this investigator named Shimizu San. I can't remember how much I've told you about her so sorry if I'm just repeating myself. She's in her early 50's. She's married and has kids but they are grown up now, so it's just her and her husband that live at the house right now. Kuroki Shimai found her in October of last year and we've been teaching her about every week so she's been taught a lot of the lessons already. So last week we were trying to figure out how we could help her progress more. She's pretty good about reading the Book of Mormon, but she has a hard time with prayer. So last week we decided to talk just about prayer and how when we pray we are really talking with our Heavenly Father and through prayer we can receive answers and guidance for our lives. Anyway the lesson went super well and she said that she would try to pray by herself!!! (This is the first time she said that she would!!) We later in the week followed up with her and she said that she prayed to find out if God existed. She said that she felt different and sort of mysterious. She said it was a feeling that she had never felt before. So the lesson this week we decided to focus on the Holy Ghost and we wanted to talk about baptism. So I extended the baptismal invite. She said it was too fast now and that she still wan't sure. She also said that her family is really important to her so she has to consider them in the decision too. Anyway it was a little disappointing, but we encouraged her to keep reading and keep praying and she said that she would. But the next day we got a text from her saying that she will never get baptized. She thanked us for all the things that we taught her but she said that she didn't want to meet us anymore. :(
It was a rough night and we did a lot of thinking and a lot of praying. I have really come to realize the importance of agency. I know that Heavenly Father has not forgotten Shimizu San and neither will we. We just have to trust in the Lord and everything will work out. :)
Hope all is well!! Never lose faith, even when things are tough!! Have a good week!
Ice on the sidewalks and streets - at least 2" thick.
Train Station in Muroran
Ice Skating on the Streets
Today - well yesterday. New haircut (bangs and minus 5"), writing emails.