Saturday, January 2, 2016

Happy New Years

Konnichi wa Kazoku to Tomodachi,

Happy New Years!!! It's 2016! Somehow. New Years in Japan is one of the biggest holidays of the year. No one really gets work off for Christmas, but nearly everyone does for Shogatsu (New Years). Thus, everything was pretty much closed down yesterday and will be today. To put it in perspective, we went to three restaurants yesterday before we found one open for lunch. The Japanese love their New Years!

I've talked about it before, but here is my basic schedule each day:
-0630- Wake up, work out for 30 minutes, breakfast, shower
-0800-0815- Pray
-0815-0900- Personal study (study the scriptures, Preach My Gospel, and other church related books and articles)
-0900-1000- Companion study: Plan for lessons we have that day and plan how to improve as a companionship.
-1000-1100- Language study: Try to learn this thing called Japanese
-1100-1200- Lunch
-1200-1230: Mogi- meaning practice teaching lessons in Japanese to my companion
-1230-1700- Teach lessons and talk to as many people as we can through knocking on doors and talking to people in the street.
-1700-1800- dinner
-1800-2100- More lessons and finding.
-2100-2130- Plan for the next day
-2130-2230- Prep for bed.

Yup. Missionary life. Pretty much the same anywhere around the word. I love it!

Notes on the Week
  • Interviews with Kaicho: Yesterday my zone had interviews with our mission president, President Egan. He and his wife are simply incredible. They are two of the most loving and humble people I know. Despite being in charge of roughly 200 young missionaries, 6 senior couples serving in the mission, and many of the congregations in the area, they make every missionary feel loved and appreciated. They kinda rock.
  • New Years Celebration: Last night we went with one of a recent convert to our branch president (the leader of our congregation). We had a delicious meal called Nabe! So oishi. See pictures below.

Video and Invitation for the Week
We all have struggles in life. That's just how it is. While we can't always control what trials we have, we can always decide how to react. Is it easy to see trials and struggles as opportunities to grow and turn towards God? No. Possible? Yes.

The video for this week is a story of a young man who struggles throughout his life to accept responsibility for the struggles in his life. It will certainly make you think and self reflect.

I invite all of you to watch it! It's not too long. So, please 1) watch it, 2) think about how you can handle trials better, and then 3) find a quote or scripture to turn to when life gets hard. The quote should help you put life back in perspective this year. Here is a website with a bunch of awesome potential quotes (

Pictures for the Week
1. New Years party. Picture from last night with the crew!

2. Food from lunch and dinner. My lunch and dinner were pretty much the same, except that dinner was homemade and much bigger. This dish is called Nabe. Yes, that is a raw egg. You dip the boiling meet and vegetables in the egg (after you scramble). So delicious!!

3. Japanese kids are adorable!!! I took this during a picture taking battle with one of our Eikaiwa (English class) students.

Elder Kevin Cash Colton
Japan Fukuoka Mission

ケビン C. コルトン 長老

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