Monday, September 7, 2015

Today I biked 22 miles.

Never in my life would I ever elect to bike that much. On P-Day, no less!

And played two hours of basketball! I'm so happy to be here - days like this are so fun and rewarding. The most rewarding days, though, are those where we see miracles! I have very little time today, but here's my favorite miracle:

Last Sunday, we had three members at church including the bishop. Yesterday, we had thirty! Chun Shimai and I have four new investigators from this week who literally just fell into our laps! (picture attached). We've been working so hard these past few weeks - biking around the mountainside that is Beppu, Japan, stopping people on the streets and knocking on their doors, trying to share the gospel. Most people are Buddhist, and they're all very traditional. 99% of the "kekko" (I'm fine, thanks) people, though, reject us very politely. I appreciate that about Japan - everyone is so polite! I wish everyone could come and have this experience. It's so amazing. 

One funny thing about Japan: everything is a few inches shorter. Sinks, doorways...the top grocery store aisle is at my eye's hilarious. And tiny bikes are everywhere! I am taller than all but maybe two of the members here. I love it!

Also love the food here. Can't get over it. I might come home heavier, but it will be worth it.

Things I've learned about biking:
1. Gear shift. A useful feature when biking up a mountain. The first time, I didn't know about it and I cried/prayed my way up. Pretty funny. 
2. For every hill up, there's always an equally exhilarating hill down.
3. Never say "I've been in Japan for 2 1/2 weeks and never remotely crashed my bike!" You will crash. Twice, according to my experience. Yep, today the streak was broken. Tough loss. I'm so covered in rain, sweat and dirt from biking down the coastline to basketball and back that I don't even care. It's just a great day!

This week, I studied hope and God's love. 1 Ne. 11:17 is my favorite. I know that if we rely on hope during difficult things, we will come out all the stronger because God loves and watches over us!

I love you all! Thank you for the prayers!

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