Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Tuesday, March 5, 2013 - Week 8

Mom and Dad,

Sorry, no Ni Hon Go this e-mail.  This computer doesn't have the same capabilities.  Anyway, it's so great to hear about everything.  So good to hear about Auntie Laurie and Uncle Paul.  Tell them Aloha for me!  Tell Auntie Laurie thanks for her letters.  They're inspirational and have been very helpful.  I've appreciated letters and packages from everyone.  Unfortunately, I won't have room to take them all with me, so I'm going to be sending a big envelope of some of my letters home soon.  Please just put it in my room somewhere.

So, I got my travel plans!  We're leaving SLC next Monday the 11th and flying Delta to LAX.  We've got about a 4 hour layover there, and then we fly to Narita on United Airlines.  In NRT we have about an hour layover and then we go to Osaka, ITM on All Nippon Airways.  So exciting!  I am completely ready for travel and everything.  I've got everything I need and should be good to go.

Stevens is going to Sendai!?  Honto ni?!  Sugoi desu yo!!!!  Saiko!  Subarashii!  ii desu yo!  Yoshi!!!!!!!  I know he'll make an amazing missionary for Japan.  He's definitely more than capable of picking up Japanese.

I have had amazing opportunities to hear from some amazing people this past week.  This last Sunday I got to hear from the Provo temple President and his wife, Brother and Sister Daines.  To start off, yesterday the Head/President of International MTC's, President Mills, came and had a meeting for the Japan going missionaries.  He served in Japan when he was young and as a mission president, so that's why he does it just for the Japan bound missionaries.  He talked a lot about expectations.  He talked about how sometimes going to a country people tell us how it is there - not many baptisms, how the members are, etc.  Essentially what I learned and what he taught is that we can't let anyone tell us anything is going to be any way.  If we do, then  our thoughts, actions, and feelings are hindered.  The only expectations we should be worried about are God's.  Mills Kaicho talked about many of the prophecies regarding missionary work in Japan.  He showed us pictures of Chapels in Japan, built multiple stories high.  But right now, they only have one ward meeting in them.  He told us we need to see Japan as God envisions it, and to work to fulfill the expectations God has.  He also urged us to seek God's expectations for us through fasting, prayer, scripture study, and reading our patriarchal blessings.  Something very insightful he said is to talk to those with keys and allow them to turn them.  Our mission presidents, branch presidents, bishops, district and stake presidents in our areas are entitled to receive revelation for the work of the Lord, and that is something we should seek after.  They can help us to know of God's will.

Another amazing experience was last Tuesday.  I was privileged to hear from Elder M. Russell Ballard.  He is such a gentle and sweet man, and he reminds me of the Savior in those regards especially.  He spoke about how God has always trusted young people.  It is so true, isn't it?  From David in the Bible to the 2000 stripling warriors, God has always entrusted the young to do His work and work for righteousness.  Another thing I found particularly insightful was that we know the Gospel.  We've heard it from the time we were children.  We must have confidence in our knowledge, and we must draw upon the personal experiences we have had living the Gospel.   PMG is the efforts of the Prophets and Apostles to condense and simplify all of the essential doctrines and principles.  It's more a refresher for us, and a guide to make sure we are teaching all we should.  But, we shouldn't worry too hard about learning the lessons in PMG, because we really do know it.  The apostles are so wonderful, and I have been so lucky to be able to hear from 2.

I am so excited to go to Japan!  I love you all, and I thank you for your support.  I might be able to call you from the SLC airport depending on how the timing works out.  I'll probably call the home phone if that's the case.  Just FYI.

I love you,

Elder Hutchings.