Sunday, August 24, 2014

Is this what banishment looks like??

​Hey folks,
It's a new transfer and I got the boot. I am in one of the most isolated places on the island....Abashiri. But I might be happier than I've ever been in a new area!

It took 6 hours by bus but..... I'm on the beach again! It's been over a year now, but I have an ocean view and it is Oh! so wonderful. Also this area is known for being one of the 2 hilliest areas in the mission: it's like nothing except these ridiculously long steep mountains that our apartment  seems to be at the uttermost bottom of. I love it. I'm sick of flatness. If I wanted to ride my bike on flatness I would have stayed home, in the flattest place on the planet Earth! I love these mountainous cities.

My new comp's name is Elder Fujisaka; don't let the Japanese name fool you he's super American. He's on transfer 5 and trying super hard. And his try-hard is a lot harder than my try-hard: he's a miltary man. He's straight up Navy, yo. And he loves to talk about it. He's done an awful lot in his life..... a heck of a lot more than I have. He's had some pretty crazy experiences, yo! But he's a way nice guy and we get along really well. It's only the 2 of us here in this area- my first 2 man since I was a bean 10 transfers ago.

The ward here is actually a branch of about 20 people. Definitely the smallest I've been in before. I love them already! Like....probably more than I've loved any ward after the first week. Everyone loves the missionaries a ton and they want to help us so much! It's one of the best feelings ever!

Oh! And I'm not a Zone Leader any more. I'm a District Leader again, which makes me SOOOOO happy.

I actually had a dream the night before we got our transfer calls. That might be the reason I am so happy here. I saw in the dream that I was coming here with this companion and would be the DL. I think the Lord needs me here right now so badly. I feel really really strongly that there is a reason that I am here and I have been working harder than I think I ever have to make myself worthy and obedient and work really hard. This feels like the beginning of what could be one of the best transfers of my mission and I'm really not going to let myself mess it up by not putting in everything I've got. I'm going to make Abashiri my home here in Hokkaido.

Love you guys,
Elder Spurling

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Music Fireside pictures.....

Sis Evans loved music and had several concerts for the community. These are pictures from a couple of the events. Rockin the Primary songs!!

A heaping helping of rain to help me feel nice and cool....

Hey folks,
It rained this week. I got real wet. But at least it wasn't burning hot. We had a ward BBQ anyway. We played mafia inside with the sisters investigators. They will both be baptized. We had a cool 19 year old guy come to church on sunday too. His name is ishii- rock well- and he is searching for something. He'll be baptized too I think. He is super interested in the idea of faith. That is kind of refreshing coming from a college kid. I got a flat tire today. It actually was a tear in my tire so I had to buy a new one. A guy tried to make me pay 60 bucks just to take off my wheel and put the new tire on and tried to convince me that it was just as cheap in America, so I walked 30 minutes to another place and they got me a better tire and tube and gear maintenance and put it all together for me for 50bucks. We have a zone activity in 30 minutes which will be a big FHE with games and spiritual message and I have prepared root beer floats (which they don't have in Japan btw). I hope its fun.....dunno. gotta go. need prep. Tired of typing. Still love yall.
Elder Spurling

I'm drowning in Japanese......

Hey folks,
Well it was transfers again. I get to stay in Asahikawa with a new comp named Elder Miyaki! He's a boss: way diligent, super obedient and way chill.... I think he compliments my excessive hyperness quite well. He also deals with it well. HA! Still the ZL- transfer 3....I'm one of 3 Americans with a Japanese mishpres.....mission leader conference should be fun this week. I'm also in an apartment with 3 Japanese that don't speak that much english and have 3 Japanese DL's, too......I think the Lord wants me to learn Japanese for some reason......  It's actually super fun, but I can't cook at all because I can only cook JApanese food but am way too shy to cook it for actual Japanese guys... I totally don't know the area that well after only 5 weeks so I'm constantly checking my map and it annoying....
Last week we went out to see the beautiful nature. I'll show you pictures. I got to go back on a special split in SHINORO!! My favorite area. It was so fun and I'm so excited because the guys there are seeing nothing except good things.
We have this way cool investigator right now that I'm doing an english gospel combo program with. He was an investigator way back in the day and remembered Pres Kimball. He also remembers nephi and lehi, and the gold plates and Joseph Smith and the Word of Wisdom and....everything.....and it fluent in english.....and I'm going to baptize him. I hope. He's way prepared and I'm way excited to see where we go with him. I have a ton of cool experiences here meeting cool people and when I get to tell them that I know our message is true, I really do know it! It's true and I'm grateful for it.!
Love ya's,
Elder Spurling

Sunday, August 10, 2014

I'm kinda hungry.........

Well not much to tell you for this week. We had Mission Leader Council with the new President which was a little differerent. He's a cool guy, very observant, just soaks everything in without speaking too much. Straight from there we went on splits with Takikawa. I had an awesome day with a new senior companion and we were able to teach a bunch of lessons and met a ton of cool people. It's times like those that being a ZL is fun. However times are not so fun when some of your missionaries decide that they want to be Anakin Skywalker from Episode 3 and you have to become Obi-wan to help them realize that what they are doing may seem right, but there is a better way.... They had a talk with Yoda yesterday and hopefully things are okay, but we are still getting a lot of push from Mace Windu to get them back on track...... We'll see what happens. We all know what an awesome Jedi Anakin is, but his stubborness could lead to big problems.....
We're teaching this nice little man that loves english right now. We still aren't exactly sure how much interest he has in the Gospel, but he seems to like to talk about it sooo....
We visited a super sweet family that is not very active in the church (or so we thought) and found out that they have a TON of faith. They let us in and gave us food and we got to share a message with them and the next day the husband and 9yo son came to church. I asked if we could do a Family Home Evening and the mom agreed as long as I make American food....which will either be tacos or pizza. HA! I love this town.
thats it probably. love ya
elder spurling

わたしの愛している家族へ、 今週は本当に楽しかったんですよ!!たくさん奇跡戸かよいものを見たんだ。I 大好き伝道!

I can't believe I'm down to the final stretch either! It's crazy out here! I went on splits 3 different times this week and had probably 3 of the splits I've ever had. I got to go out with Elder Harper, my second companion. He's going home this week and so we went out and hit the pavement as hard as we could. We taught a ton of lessons and handed out 3 BoM's. It was crazy good!! I went with two other really young missionaries who I found out are vastly superior in skill to a lot of the older missionaries. I learned a load and a half from them.

We met the new mission president and his wife this week at a conference that they did here. They are Japanese, but lived in Chicago for a while and so are basically super fluent.... but they still did their workshops in Japanese so I set up a wireless mic and earphones and translated for some of the younger missionaries. It was terrifiying, but I got through it alright. HA!

We actually had fireworks on the 5th and took our dinner time to watch them but didn't get to see the very end..... they had 10,000 fireworks! I don't think anyone knew about the 4th of July, but it was nice.

I'll talk to ya'll later! Going on a hike today. Transfer week.....

Elder Spurling