Thursday, December 4, 2014

So, I really don't know what to say. I kinda feel sick. I'm saying goodbye to Japan and finally going home.....however I don't really feel like I belong at home. It's a really scary thing.

Anyway, this last week I have been working hard as ever. I start getting excited about listening to music and being able to take my tie off....but I love working here in Japan. I don't want to lose this connection that I finally found with my mother country. I love these people and the culture and the language.

However, the one thing about this country that makes my heart hurt is the lack of Christmas.....mostly the lack of Christianity, but Christmas has always been the best time of the year for me. EVERYONE is happy. People in Japan just hate the cold and seem a little down. SO, it's a great time of year to be a missionary. We are going around and giving out Book of Mormon's as Christmas presents again and inviting people to try getting into the Christmas spirit. Haha, it's kinda fun. I kinda feel like Buddy the Elf. "Christmas is the most wonderful thing in the whole wide world!"

In other news, we have been working with our investigator T san. I know that mom said to stay away, but get this: we had a crazy miracle. We have been teaching her about God and church and how she can rely on God to overcome her trials. AND she quit her job. She says she wants to change her life and be a better person. Whatever her job was, she's done and wants to be better. The Branch knows her situation and how what kinda work she's been doing and we're going to try and help her get back on the road. She's had a pretty awful background.

Other than that, I had the most famous Ramen in all of Tamana.....and possibly all of Kyushu. It's a tiny little place run by a family and it's been around for YEARS. The Ramen literally. It smells SOOO bad. I was shocked when I walked into the shop. Also, there is no menu. You get Ramen....or more Ramen. Pictures are against the rules. The Ramen recipe is a huge secret. It was like visiting the Queen of England....I didn'T know what was allowed and what wasn't.

Then they brought out the ramen. It was the most unreal experience of my life. You know the seen at the end of Ratatouille, where the Critic takes the first bite of his meal and the camera zooms into his eyes and he has the flashback of his childhood. Yeah, it was kinda like that. It was Way freaking good. I'm so blessed to have been able to eat Tamana ramen.

Well, I think that's it. I "Weekly planned" for when I go home. I already set goals and made plans for when I'm getting job and stuff like that. ;) I'm going to work my hardest and then see what happens when I get back. I'm so grateful for the support I've had on my mission. I didn't have the money really to pay for this experience and I'm so grateful that I had such wonderful parents to help me out. Thank you for every single letter and email throughout it all. All the packages. I know mom spent a lot of money and time on each one. I love you all and I'll see you in a few days.

Elder Low

Monday, November 24, 2014

SO, I will only email you guys one last time after this....It's a little bit crazy. I'm getting really scared. Haha, It's a little bit ridiculous. I had a good week though.

This last Saturday, the Omuta branch went to the Fukuoka temple so I had the opportunity to go with them. It was my first time going to the temple to do a session in Fukuoka. It was SO great. I was so happy and it was also the first time for me to go to the temple with the new changes. I had so much dendo fire after that. AND the Fukuoka temple is beautiful. I just love the temple. Also, while I was there, I ran into Nakaima Kaicho. He's the Stake President of the Okinawa stake. I was so excited to see him. He told me all about Naha and how things are. He's wonderful and it was great to get to work with him there.

This last week, we found a sweet couple to teach. The K couple. They brought us into their house and tried to give us tea and coffee. It was a great teaching opportunity and they are going to let us come back. They wouldn't stop feeding us. Haha, they gave us just about everything they could find to feed us. They were very sweet.

T san is kinda sick. It looks like we can't visit her. Maybe we'll drop off some fruit for her family or something. She just doesn't have any hope for anything and because of that she won't try anything. We're really just trying to lift her up now. We'll see how it goes.

Other than that, I'm still just going as hard as I can. I'm getting so so tired and temptation tells me that I can't really accomplish anything in two weeks, but I'm still going as hard as I can. Haha, I didn't think that the end would be this rough. I still love it though. I love sharing this Gospel and I love representing my Savior here in Japan. I'll be emailing on Tuesday next week so that will be my last email from here.

Ahhhh. that's so sad.

Anyway, I'll make every second count!

Love you all,
Elder Low

Monday, November 10, 2014

We had a really busy week. Lots of work and lots of great things going on.

Our Investigator, T san, is probably our biggest focus right now. We have been really working to meet her husband or to get her to Church. This week, the goal was to get to Church. She almost committed, but some things came up. It turns out that she has some sort of Anxiety and Depression and she has attacks when she's around lots of people. We assured her that she had nothing to worry about and that the people at church were very kind and nice. Apparently these attacks come out A LOT. She says that she would feel so bad if she had one at Church. That's also the reason she's always home. They don't happen when she's staying at home, but apparently shopping is even difficult for her. We aren't quite sure what we are going to do with her. The Next goal is find a time to meet her Husband. I think if a member drives us home after visiting her, we can meet her husband.

Also, we found some good people to meet with this week so we're getting busy with lessons again. I love it that way. It's way better than being told off.

This week, we also had a zone conference. It went really well. Kaicho asked all the missionaries who were dying to bear their testimonies. It was really awful. I got really emotional and cried in front of the whole zone. It was super embarrassing. It just sunk in that I only have a little bit more time to do this great work here in Japan. I love these people so much and I love this mission.

At Zone Conference

After zone conference, I had an interview with Kaicho. He gave me and the others in my district a special assignment to go out of our areas to go find a new area to open up. He gave us some cities that we have to go find and work in. He said, "I have to get this done before you go home. This is why I sent you here". I'm so grateful that Kaicho trusts me. It's kinda scary though. We'll be working out in the middle of nowhere with no members. Haha, I get to be a pioneer for Kumamoto stake. Haha, I feel pretty cool. It's also a good way to keep me from going trunky. So that's great.

Anyway, I love being a missionary. I keep meeting these people and It's just amazing to be the person to introduce the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them.

Being a missionary is the best job in the world. I can't believe how I didn't understand that before I came. I didn't realize at all what it would be. I didn't think it would be this kind of work. Everyone says that it is fun. That's not really a good word. There are times when it is "fun", but that's not the best part of being a missionary. It's just the happiest work. I hope the young men in the 8th ward (or whatever the heck it's called now) know that this is not worth missing out on. I didn't realize how blessed I would be for coming out here.

I love you all and I know this Church is true!

Elder Low

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

So, I really don't have much to report this week. It was transfer week and I obviously stayed. Dying here in Tamana. Anyway, the reason I don't have much to report is because I got sick with bronchitis.  I've been out since Wednesday. So, I literally sat in the apartment all week.  Wednesday night Eikaiwa was brutal. I thought I was going to collapse. Then we went home and took my temperature and I was at 102 degrees. The Asthma loves a good bronchitis so I feel like I've been running since Wednesday. I still pray that one day I'll outgrow my asthma. I had to whip out the nebulizer two or three times. I thought I was going to pass out.....and my roommates thought I was going to die. Haha, I feel bad. I finally had the energy to get up yesterday and I went to church. Turns out that everyone in the branch already knew I was sick. Word spread fast. People brought me soup and ice cream and stuff. It was really sweet.

Now, I'm doing fine. Just a little cough. My energy is back and I'm ready to get back to work.

Oh! I forgot to tell you. The mission president was called down to our stake to give a talk at Stake Conference next week. The stake president really wants to get everyone excited about Dendo. I got a call from the Stake President and he said that he wanted a missionary to raise everyone's dendo fire and the Mission President had recommended me. So, now I have to give a talk at Stake Conference for everyone in the Kumamoto stake. I'm awful at speaking in front of people in Japanese. I'm pretty nervous, but I guess we'll see how it goes. I've been preparing a lot.

Anyway, that's really all I've got. I'm sorry. It's been a pretty awful week, but I haven't had a lot of awful weeks, so I guess I had to have them sometime. Time to get back down to business this week. I'm so pumped.

Love you all,
Elder Randy Kazuhiro Low

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Another busy week this week. We had the Typhoon on Monday so our week took a huge toll. We had lots of people we were supposed to meet with on Monday and Tuesday....but A lot of them bailed which was a huge disappointment. We are working hard though. This week is transfer week. It's not super exciting for me because this is my last one! It's kinda crazy. This is my last stretch. Everyone thinks I'm going to get trunky. I'm still giving it all I've got though. However, this last Sunday in Ward Council we planned for the Christmas party. I realized that everything we were talking about will take place after I've returned. I felt really sick. I love this country and these people so much and I'm scared to go back to the U.S.

Bikes on the train. I do this every day.

Anyway, we finally have a progressing investigator. Mori is now Progressing.....kinda weird though. She's about 60 years old and at our last lesson she came to the door in a skirt that was too short for ANYONE. It was way gross. She has some sort of social disorder, but she is very sweet and she understands well. She's reading the BOM and we've taught her a lot. thing this week. I got yelled at again. Way hard. That's not the first time that has happened...
but I also got punched in the face.......that is the first time that has happened. The reason was ridiculous though. I rang the door bell and the introduced myself as "Low".....I always do that. Instantly he started yelling at me because I didn't tell him where I was from first. Then I told him that I was from America and he started yelling at me that I didn't need to tell him where I was from because he saw my name tag. I was so confused. He started yelling that I was worthless and garbage.....It was kinda hard to understand, but obviously I got the picture though. 
Then out of nowhere it nailed me. No worries though. Not any visible bruising. Jaw is kinda sore, but that's all.
It was a rough day, but it's all worth it. I am so grateful that the mission has taught me to stand firm in my beliefs no matter what. I love this gospel and I love sharing it.

That's all for this week, but I love you all. I miss you all. I'm going to kill it this last transfer. Going as hard as I can.
Love you
Elder Low

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

So, the reason I'm emailing today instead of yesterday is there was a Typhoon and we were all grounded yesterday. It's the worst. I get to study scriptures all day.....which is really nice, but every once in a while I'm like, "Shoot, this stuff is good! I gotta go tell someone about this book!" but we can't go out to Dendo. It's like having a bucket of waterballoons and not being allowed to go anywhere. I just want to nail something with this water balloon.

We got to watch Conference this weekend. It was wonderful....I know that's all old news to you guys at home, but I was so happy. It was the best. I love President Eyring So much. His talks were my favorites. Being stuck inside all day yesterday also allowed me to listen to most of the conference in Japanese. It was great study time. :)

This last week, we've been working with this lady named M san. Our first meeting with her was a couple weeks ago. She was a very quiet lady and we didn't think much of her. Then, when we visited last week, there was a sign on her door that told us that she couldn't make our appointment because she was going to the Hospital. So, we came again a couple days ago and she had been reading the Book of Mormon. She didn't understand it, but read a LOT. I was really grateful that she tried her best. We were able to talk with her about what she read and she understands it now. We are meeting her again tonight.

Other than that, we are still working really hard everyday. It's a very tiring area. It was even worse sitting all day in the apartment though. I just want to get to work. I was getting really antsy yesterday.


Anyway, I love being a missionary. It's the best job ever. I love the people here. I finally feel like I can comfortably connect with people in Japanese.  I regret not studying it before the mission though. I want to study it after the mission though. I love this language and these people and I don't want to lose that connection. In the meantime, I'm going to do what my roommate Elder Tabuchi told me to do. Like Nephi did, we need to gain favor of the Tamanaites and invite them into the wilderness. So, we are working on gaining favor.

Some food

I love you all and I'll do better with pictures!

Elder Randy Kazuhiro Low