Get ready for another long email. I have tons of stories for this week. This week I'm going to break it down day by day to give you a better perspective on my week.
After emailing last Monday, I played basketball with some other elders in my district from 2ish to around 6! I'm so freaking out of shape it's not even funny. I sucked too, which made it all the more better. These Japanese people are super quick. Going through my legs left and right...not quite but there were way talented. I think I lost 10 lbs of sweat that day. Only thing that sucked was we ended up getting back too late to go out and teach because our area is so far away.
Tuesday: we went to the same sushi place we went a couple weeks ago,called とりとん (toriton) I had a competition with another missionary on who could eat more plates. He's famous for being a big eater, so I was in for a challenge. I'm stupid and didn't realize the color of the plates correlated to the price of the dish. I noticed he had a bunch of white plates which were way cheap and I had bunch of orange. (One of the more expensive trays) As I started getting way full, I ended up grabbing juices so that I wouldn't fill up too fast. Good strategy I know. Everyone thought the juice was hilarious because he started copying the strategy. I was basically just wasting money. Ended up losing 12/13, and I spent 2069¥ basically 25$. So now I'm struggling to get through the month. Later that day I did splits with a 日本人(Japanese)elder. He spoke no English. I spoke only Japanese with him throughout the whole split. I was surprised that I said more than I thought I knew. We housed for a long time and even gave out a Book of Mormon with our testimonies in it. Pretty awesome experience for the everyone. Slept over at the mission home that night...it's nice being five minutes from Honbu. It gives me a lot more perks than other missionaries.
Wednesday: another perk of being so close to the mission home is the food. We got invited over for lunch at the Nakatsuka's house. Literally 15 steps away from the mission home. I'm probably the only new missionary to eat there so much during my training. At Eikaiwa I finally met one of our progressing investigators minoru kun. He liked the class, but I still doesn't see any church progression, so I kind of think we're wasting some of our time on him. Especially because we haven't had a lesson with him in almost 100 days now.
Thursday: didn't leave the apartment until 5:30 because of our weekly planning session. It's called dkk doryo keikakukai (companion planning session) and lasts 3 hours every Thursday. On the way to Eikaiwa we were riding next to a stack of bikes on a narrow road and then I hear "oh shoot" elder birch knocked over a bike in a row of about 100 and we booked it because we weren't sure if they all fell over in a domino effect. Still only 1 person showed up to Eikaiwa, so we're thinking about closing it.
Friday: we had a member offer us dinner. I was stoked, but the bike ride was 40 minutes from the church. Yep that's right.... The bike ride was an hour and 20 minutes total. It seriously felt endless. However, the food was so good that it was honestly worth it. We biked a total of 2 hours and 40 minutes there and back. I slept great that night. Before the meal we did a little housing and met some catholic guy. He spent 20 minutes ranting in Japanese about how Catholic Churches are the right church. He kept saying "different church...same feeling" it was kind of awkward going there to teach and having him pour his heart out to us.
Saturday: we visited a less active member " kumagai" he got baptized a while ago, but doesn't go to church very much. We spent an hour talking about how going to church really blesses you. I wanted to share a personal experience, but really wanted to get my message across, so elder birch translated as I spoke in English. That meeting really seemed to touch his heart a lot. We invited him to come to
church in a couple weeks, and he ended up coming yesterday. It made me so freaking happy. I really feel like my personal experience made him realize the specialty of church and that awesome feeling there. We also showed him an awesome video called "because of him" (イエスキリストのおかげで). Go watch it please!!! This isn't one of those read that last line and don't watch it moments... Please watch it! It's about Jesus Christ and I promise it will touch your hearts. I've seen it 20 times in the last week. It's only 2 minutes. I think there's 3 of them. They're holiday videos for Christmas time, but please go watch at least one!
Sunday: had another meal from a member, which seems likely but supposedly doesn't happen all too often. Got to do a practice lesson, and I got wrecked. My companion doesn't help, instead he lets me struggle which is good for me, but also very frustrating.
This language is really rough. I won't sugarcoat it. Some days I'll be really down because of how hard it is. Sometimes I feel way low. I've never experience anything more difficult than not understanding what's going on 24/7. I would really appreciate prayers from anyone. Even if you aren't a member of the same church. Just try it. I promise you'll feel good about it. Can be about anything you want.
Anyway, I'm grateful to be here and see myself grow every day. Sorry for the long email again.
Love you all! Have a good one!
敬具 (sincerely yours)
ー 謝意人 長老 (Elder Scheidt)