Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Fishing for Friends (5/28/18)

Hey everyone this week has been an interesting one. This last Monday was a busy one! We got fed to all you can eat barbecue, went to Utonai Lake, gave a bunch of stuff away to people from the old senior missionary couples' apartment, and went fishing again. This time we went with a less active boy named shouma. It was a ton of fun and he loved it! I also found a pin that said "child of God" in Japanese so of course I bought it. :) 

The rest of he week was also really great, we had a lot of things happen. We saw a lot of miracles that made this week an amazing one. We found a Malaysian guy who loves Christ by taking a wrong turn, were able to meet a bunch of less actives, got a few more appointments made for this week, and so many more miracles.  Truly when you count your every blessing the light begins to shed forth and you can always find things to be joyful about. Likewise when you count your every sorrow the fog of darkness spreads blocking out the light that is constantly there. We have a choice between seeing the light and blocking it out, the important thing for us is to decide which one we want and then strive for it. 

This week we also completely cleaned out the old missionary couples' apartment. This makes the second apartment I have closed on my mission by going to an area where the senior couples leave. Maybe I just have bad luck or maybe I'm the one trusted most to get it taken care of. I have yet to figure it out haha! 

The fishing activity has expanded tremendously over this past week. We are going today and this time bringing about 5 more people.  So our numbers have doubled and within that group we have another less active, two members and an investigator. Should be a blast! Luckily our numbers of poles got doubled too by some very kind members. This Sunday we also had Branch conference which was great. I learned something really important too. Our Branch president was talking about the last words of Ether. The way the scriptures end in Japanese is doudemo yoi amen which basically means it matterth not, amen. The order got changed a little bit in the translation but that isn't important, what is important is the message it holds. He was talking about showing our love and the love of God towards others. It does t matter how we show love, how others accept our love, or anything else.
So long as we show it and do what Christ wants us to, it matterth not.

Truly as we strive to do what's right and help others be saved in the kingdom of God, it won't matter how good the cookies looked, or how long of a letter or message you wrote but that you showed love and did your best to do what Christ wants of you.

I hope you all have a great week, I love you!
Elder Harvey

Mission Conference (5/21/18)

Hey everyone! This has been a crazy week! I hope you all had a great week as well. This week I was all over the place. I returned back to my old area Eniwa for a day and got to see a lot of my old friends from there. It was really great to be able to meet with them and talk about the Gospel with them. Truly I felt blessed as the timing of our day worked out perfectly to run into people on the street that I would not have otherwise have met had I gone to their house. Certainly the Lord was guiding us. 

The next day was Mission conference! Elder Renlund of the Twelve Apostles visited with us and gave us training.  It was an amazing experience and I learned a lot. We followed that up by mission training by our mission President as well. We had Lunch together with everyone which was a blast because I was able to meet all of my friends throughout Hokkaido. Truly a special opportunity.
Then a number of the missionaries had a special opportunity to attend a devotional by Elder Renlund that night. There were members from all over Sapporo so I was able to meet a lot of members from my past areas. Even one of the sisters I came to Japan with was there.  She just happened to pick the right day to take a trip to Japan. It was a really great day. Pretty much that entire day I was at the Atsubetsu church. Certainly a once in a life time kind of deal. We also had a great week other wise and met with a few friends and gave the sisters in our ward Mother's Day gifts. It was a great week.

Love y'all
Elder Harvey

(Zach is in the center of the first row of those standing)

Fishers of Men? (5/14/18)

Hey everyone, I hope you all had a great Mother's Day! Truly all of our mothers are some of the greatest blessings in our lives.

This last Monday was really interesting. Very close to where we live is the port of Tomakomai so we decided to go fishing! We all geared up and set up our poles, we were super excited to catch something though we were unfruitful this time. We are looking forward to challenging again though, This time we will emerge victorious!

Then on Tuesday we spent the day having to go down to Muroran and back which ate up a lot of our time. I was able to meet a really cool recent convert here who we brought to English class. He's a really cool kid! Wednesday was really cool too, we were able to have a lesson with a really cool new person that we were able to meet. We also traveled really far along the beach and everyone there seemed to see us foreigners with amazement. Thursday was also really busy. We were able to make an appointment with someone the next day which was also really nice. Friday was splits and I went back down to Muroran. While there I learned some Japanese sign language which was really interesting. Saturday was making it back here, going to a lesson, then to service, studies, and then English class again. It was a busy day with a bunch of really cool encounters with people. Sunday was also really great, the members were really happy too. It was a good Mother's Day and we were able to get some things done. It was a good day. 

I hope you guys all have a great week this week too! This week is going to be busy, busy, busy. I will be out of my area for more than half the week! It will be a little strange. I love you guys!

Elder Harvey

Golden Week (5/7/18)

Hey everyone this week has been great! This week was Golden Week which meant everyone was on vacation. That made it both fun and not so fun as we were meeting people who didn't even live in Tomakomai. I even met a friend of mine from Wakkanai! We were just biking down the street to go back home when I hear someone yell "Haabii!" We then turned around and I found out it was my friend. It was truly a miracle that we happened to cross paths at the perfect timing! We also have been able to make a few new friends through talking with people on the phone and going to our local food court and starting conversations with people. It was really interesting because we kept getting a lot of stares from passing by girls. I always felt kind of lucky that we were talking with someone whenever they would stop to try to talk with us but then give up. I realized it's kind of weird being approached by other people, especially when you think of why they are approaching you sometimes. Something I learned was how to approach people more naturally and make it less weird for them which really helps people feel more comfortable and open up more.

I hope you guys all had a great week! I hope you all have an amazing Mother's Day!

Love y'all
Elder Harvey

From Zero to Hero (4/30/18)

Hey everyone! I hope you all had a fantastic week! For the missionaries in the Frozen Chozen Japan Sapporo mission it was transfer week! Unfortunately I had to say goodbye to my beloved Wakkanai. I have absolutely come to love the people there and the place itself. I was able to grow a lot there and learn a lot about myself while I served there. I was also sad to think that I would no longer see the ocean, Thankfully though that is not the case. I am still ocean side! I almost made it from the northern most point to the southernmost but didn't quite make it all the way. Instead I made it to the amazing place of Tomakomai! I thought it was really funny to be called here right after serving in Wakkanai. As a mission we have a mission song and the only two areas that are mentioned are Wakkanai and Tomakomai. It goes a little something like this "from the icy shores of Wakkanai to the Ainus in Tomakomai". I thought it was really cool that I actually got to live out that part of the song.

Also I am opening the area! Meaning that I am starting from 0. Though I have faith that before I leave and before this area gets closed down due to numbers (unfortunately it is inevitable) that we will build this area to hero status! My new companion is Elder Schvaneveldt (Swan) and is amazing! He has moved all over the place. He has lived in Japan, Costa Rica, Utah, and New York. He is actually a cadet from West Point! I am super excited to have army by my side! I also live in an apartment with two other Elders. Elder Hammond (who was here before) and Elder Jenson (who just moved here).

I have already seen so many miracles while I have been here! I am super excited for this transfer and to preform the Miracles that God is eager to preform. I hope all of you guys can see the miracles in your lives as well! I love you guys, have a great week!


Elder Harvey

Scavenger Hunt (4/23/18)

Hey guys, I hope you all have had a great week! This week has really flown by fast, a lot has happened. To start off we went down to Asahikawa...again. This time was just for splits. Also we had an awesome District activity that Monday! We had a city wide scavenger hunt which was really fun! We had some really crazy things to find like 10 taxis in one photo, somebody named Kobayashi, and a Lamborghini! It was tons of fun and I was paired with one of my favorite Elders in the mission, Elder Takano! We found just about everything on the list but nobody could find the Lamborghini. We even went to the travel office in the Asahikawa Eki and asked them to call various toy stores to find one. We then found out that not only did no store have one, but that a lot of people had come in asking these various stores! We made it seem like they had become a hit item all of a sudden, I just hope that they didn't order a bunch of them just to find they aren't so popular anymore, Haha!

Then I had splits which went pretty well. What was really sad though, was that because I couldn't bring bikes down my companionship didn't get to ride them. A few hours into proselytizing and we get a call from the other Elders... some random teenager ran into the other Elders (specifically the person who was riding the bike which belonged to the Elder I was splitting with) and ended up destroying the back tire of the bike. Then they rode off and ran away. In the end they were able to get a new tire for about 30 dollars.

The day we got back was also an interesting day as we were able to suddenly meet some friends at the Library as we were walking back from the train station to our apartment. Certainly some Heavenly coincidences. We also had an investigator of ours bring an entire lunch for her dance group and the church members here after Church.  Recently a friend of hers died and it seems like we were the only ones who sent any words of encouragement. At that time she was feeling rather depressed and that's when our text came. We sent a scripture from the Book of Mormon. She seemed to have really have been touched by that.

I hope all of your guys' weeks have been fantastic!

Love y'all
Elder Harvey

 This tricycle was 3000 dollars! 

For these pictures we had to get a 7-11 a Lawson and Seicomart combini(convenience stores) all in one picture.

Special Wakkanai Ice cream we got from an investigator. 

Miracles Inbound (4/16/18)

Hello Everyone.

I hope you have all been well. Things have been busy as ever. We had to go down to Asahikawa which always makes things that much busier! We had a wonderful Zone conference which was a highlight for sure. The day before we had Zone activity which was nice. We played a combination of scattergories, are you smarter than a deacon, and whose line is it anyway. The highlight of it was the whose line is it anyway! Some really great acting there. It was kind of funny because for some reason we were doing it all in English so some of the Japanese missionary's English was hilarious!

During this Zone conference we talked about a lot of things. We talked about dust mites and dignity, how we've changed, faith and more. But to me the message that stuck with me most was about motives. We talked about coming to really love the Lord and examining ourselves. Up to now I don't think I've ever truly examined myself before. It was mostly about examining our motives and trying to become more in line with the Savior's motives. As we do so we will find dramatic changes in our lives and will continuously find more joy. I was able to learn a lot about learning who I am and was able to apply it. It was a really great exercise and I learned a lot, I would highly recommend it to everyone.

Some other highlights are some big miracles that happened on Saturday!  We started off the day by going to an appointment with an investigator. She wasn't there. So we go to the Library for studies and find 2 less active members inside! We already had an appointment scheduled for 12:30 that same day and we were able to get the other less active member to come as well! Then, right as we finished talking with them we get a call from the investigator who wasn't home apologizing for not being there. We told her we were still close by and she told us to come over! Truly a series of blessings that came in the Lords time table! We were also able to meet with a few other people and make some appointments with new people. Once again we are going down to Asahikawa but I'm excited for when we get back! Miracles are on the way!

I hope you all can see the daily miracles in your lives and continue to find joy in the miracle of your family and friends!
Love y'all
Elder Harvey