Monday, March 17, 2014

What an amazing blessing this gospel of second chances truly is for everyone!

March 17, 2014

Oi Familiaaaaaa!!!!

Hmm. So where to begin.... THIS HAS BEEN AN INSANEEE WEEK!

Soooo, I've been getting weird feelings and "promptings(?)" that my mission was over.  It was super stressful and discouraging at times but I worked on.  I also got stressed because there are sooo many inconveniences of being a visa waiter and I didn't want to leave anyway so I told sister Nilson -- mostly joking -- if I don't get it at 9 months, I'm calling President and I'm telling him to cancel my visa app! ..... mostly joking .... but all of a sudden, the morning of my exact 9 month mark, I get the call from the office.  It didn't really hit me.  It was weird.  I heard what she was saying but it felt like I already knew and it was like old news.  Then I hung up and Sister Nilson was freaking out for me and I was like hmm.  Okay.  I seriously felt like I didn't even realize it was real.  I felt like it wasn’t for a while.  I kept going like nothing happened and she kept asking if we were going to tell people and I was like what?  Tell what?  Oh, no.  Not yet. I kept forgetting, but not really.  It was weird.  I still kind of haven’t told anyone but missionaries. I don't want to tell anyone, but I think it's really bad for me cause when it hits me it’s going to be even worse of a reaction.  I feel like I still don’t realize what’s happening.  I keep having weird images of airports and MTC rooms and airplanes and things pop into my head and I push them away.  Most likely the Spirit is trying to prepare me for it so it's not so crippling of a shock, but I'm being stubborn as usual and resisting reality....... hmm.  I'll work on that.

Still as I tell you this I feel like it's not real, but yes I agree with Travis, at least I can make it for the WORLD CUP!! :))) and sweatiness mmmmm.... yuck.   At least I missed their Summer!! :) yay! haha.  I just can't believe that it's literally at my half mark I'm leaving.  I have 2 missions... so weird.  haha.  :P

ANYWAY!!! The crazy part is this isn't even the highlight of the week!!!!

BRENDA AND MATT ALLEN WERE BAPTIZED THIS PAST SATURDAY AND CONFIRMED YESTERDAY WITH THE MUNCY GIRLS!!!  IT WAS SOOOOO AMAZING!!!  I was crying ... a lot ... haha.  But it was just sooo amazing!!  I drew them a picture of Joseph Smith's First vision....  I was super rushed with the Godhead part soooooo... it's real bad.  hahahah.  but she really likes pictures and likes the first vision because she read so many Near Death Experiences where they mentioned the orbs of light coming down.  And we got him a tie because he has one -- a Harley Davidson tie.  hahahah.  Now he has a nice tie.
But wow....  it was soooo good.  He stood up and bore a 16 minute testimony and was crying and it was touching.  It was sooooooo insanely good.  Best baptism ever.  And the Staffords came and … This week was just amazing.  Eric, who is also really hesitant was there and he confessed that his main holdup is he doesn’t want a huge service making a spectacle of it.  Soooo we're working on having a small service for him with just family and close friends there and then right after with Tami and Alexis they have their huge one that they want. :)))) SO HOPEFULLY THAT FAMILY WILL be BAPTIZED TOGETHER (Tami and Alexis are going to with or without Eric ... but we want the whole family to do it together!!!! :))))) ) ON THE 29THH!!! MY LAST SATURDAY HERE!! I'm SOOO EXCITED!! This is the BEST TRANSFER EVER!!!!!! :)

Basically, it was the best weekend.  oh man. Their confirmation blessings both said they'd be a huge example and missionary for their immediate families, who they are really nervous about finding out because they were both raised super anti.  Basically at this point, if their families find out, they will be condemned by their family and church........ bible-belters … and so that in their confirmation blessing was suuper powerful. also, it talked about the work they will do for their ancestors (which they’ve already gotten some names ready for the temple!! WHAT hahahah) and that Matt will have many responsibilities in the Priesthood and the Church. I just KNOW he will be some kind of general authority or something haha.  He's sooo powerful and humble and smart and spiritual.  It's insane and she is his spiritual rock.  The kind of support a GA's wife needs to be.  It's going to happen.   haha.  But man, I feel sooooooOOOOooo incredibly blessed to be a part of their journey.  I feel like my testimony and spirit and mind have ENTIRELY grown to a new stage because of them.   The kind of investigator where you KNOW this had NOTHING to do with me.  I did NOTHING because it was ALL them and the Spirit.  But what an incredible blessing for me to have been able to witness it and come to know and love them so incredibly much!!!  I will never EVER forget this area. I swear if I get in an accident and get amnesia, this experience will be the one I'd still remember.  haha.  It's just been such an amazing spiritual journey and now they've just begun the rest of theirs!  :)  I CANT WAIT to come back for their SEALING!! :)))

On another note this week, not quite as amazing as this last story, but still pretty interesting....... SO on exchanges this week with my Sister Training Leader, Sister Stoker, (she also went to BYU, lived at Liberty, and knew quite a few of the people I knew there haha), we had some visitors from Salt Lake -- the photographer and reporter for the Deseret News. I don’t know what that is but some news in SLC I guess haha.  And they wanted to interview the STL's and see what it's like to be a sister missionary!  lol.  So they took pics but I was on exchanges and not even with my companion but they were like OH what a great story!!  STL.  On exchanges with a VISA WAITER who has been here 9 MONTHS!  hahahahha.  So they took pictures, but the BEST PART IS..... they wanted us on bikes...............................................................................................................................................
......................................................awesome..... the ONE thing I'd prefer for no one in the world to see will be on the Newspaper for ALL to see...... hahahaha.  Our AMAZINGly attractive alien-head helmets and bike skirts going across the Vegas skyline.  Epic.... hahahahah. and then also pictures of us contacting some people at a garage sale haha.  It was pretty fun!  So yes, if you see the General Conference Edition of the Deseret News, We may possibly be on it. Look for the Sisters on Bikes.  lol.  Woohoo for Sisters! :)

Other than that, this week was quite normal!  :) SO GREAT!  I'm super excited for this next week! We've been baptizing almost weekly here!  hahahaha. jk. but it's just been the most amazing rewarding experience being here in Vegas. Serving in my own language and loving the most diverse people.  I will never see others the same.  I've had a taste of what Heavenly Father feels for me and for those around me and I hope and pray that it will become a part of who I am so that I can Always keep that with me.  Love is so risky. You will get hurt and you will grieve --it's the price for loving, but in the end, it is SO much more worth it than the risk. I've never gotten my heart broken more than on a mission, but in the process, I've gained compassion and understanding and a home here in Henderson and Kingman.  9 months and never served in the city.  haha.  But man, missions are amazing! I can't wait to see the new adventures and growth and love and PAIN I'll have in my next mission!  As hard as it is, I KNOW that I was called here for a reason and that now I'm being called there for a reason.

I've gained so much trust in my Heavenly Father and His higher ways and understanding. It's something I will treasure for the rest of my life. I know He has such an intricate plan for me and for every single person He's created. He's prepared/preparing us for so much more and I can't wait to see what that is!! I love this gospel soo much.  I've never been so happy and fulfilled and so filled with peace in my life. The stress and hard work and exhaustion and pain and weather, it's no sacrifice compared to the blessings and growth and happiness I receive.  It's so true -- God will never be indebted to me. I can give him 10000000% of me, and I will still get 100 fold in return.  I am so grateful for this opportunity to be here in this mission, and even ON a mission at all. It blows my mind that I'm a missionary. I still freak out sometimes -- I'm a missionary!  haha. but I am so grateful for His infinite mercy in snatching me out of the world and my past sins and life, "not of any worthiness of myself" (Alma 36:5) but solely by His grace and mercy. And I hope to be like Alma the younger when he says, "yea, from that time even until now, I have labored without ceasing, that I might bring souls unto repentance; that I might bring them to taste of the exceeding joy of which I did taste" (Alma 36:24).

What an amazing blessing this gospel of second chances truly is for everyone!  What Good news it really is!!

I love you all!  Thank you for your support and prayers and love!!  I could never make it without you all<3333
You’re in my prayers every night.
Ate Brasil!!!!
-Sister Yoshimoto
ps. no Sister Nilson hasn't gotten her visa yet.  She has to take care of the area when I'm gone!!!! :)
But one of the other missionaries from my MTC district is leaving the same day as me!!!  How cool!  haha.

pics: Brenda and Matt Allen<3
You know you're a missionary when.... someone gives you flowers and you only have your old water jug to cut up and use as a vase.  hahahha

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