#14: Translate a sermon

Last week, we had a mochi-making party after church. I was just about to go home after stuffing myself with mochi (well, I had three pieces. And three onigiri. I was STUFFED), when my pastor asked me if I would translate the sermon next week at 242. Of course, I freaked out, because my Japanese isn’t great yet, but I wanted to try. So he gave me his notes, Minako helped me with the kanji that I didn’t know, and I took it home to translate. That was really interesting! For the past three or so years at church, I hadn’t really been listening to the sermon, except for when someone translated it for me. So the chance to really get to know what the heck Yoji was talking about was nice.

I spent about four hours over the week translating the sermon, and getting ready for translating. It was easy to translate it on paper, but the thought of doing it live at church was scary. Because there were a couple people there who could speak both languages better than me, so they would know when I messed up.

Also, Yoji speaks really fast when he gets excited, and anyway, there are still so many words that I don’t know in Japanese (example: 哲学, which I learned means philosophy). So translating the message from the paper is easy, but I knew Yoji would want to tell another story too.

Before the sermon, we, as usual, had a time of worship. And during the worship, I was praying that God would help me, because I was getting more and more nervous.

I felt that God was really getting ready to use me. This is what I had been preparing for. This is the reason for studying Japanese so much. I should have faith, because whether I mess up or not, God is Good, and He will be glorified. God will get His message across through Yoji, through me, to the people of the nations.

So I got up there. I translated the sermon, and of course Yoji started telling a story about when he was in high school, and it wasn’t so bad. The people who came to the church are much kinder to me than I am. Damn you, perfectionism!!

God is good all the time!


#10 &#17: Make bread by hand & Make jam

On my Christmas vacation, I had a lot of time at home, so I planned to do a lot of cooking. Two of the items on my To Do List include making bread by hand (anyways, I don’t have a bread maker!) and make jam. My mom sent me some certo for my birthday, so I could make the BEST kind of jam ever! (yeah, shameless plug for Certo, I know, but this jam is sooo good!)

I LOVE cheese bread, and I haven’t found a good loaf of it in Japan so far, so I decided to make it myself. At first I thought it was too salty, but I changed my mind after a few slices. The bread was really easy to make. There were only five ingredients: flour (1 kg!), yeast, salt, cheese, and water. Kneading the bread was my favourite part. Mindless work that keeps my hands busy. It was reminiscent of when I worked at Muskoka Heritage Place, and one day I was in the Darling House (where they explain about the process of knitting and laundry) and I was sitting there, oh, maybe for an hour, knitting on a very quiet day. I was so absorbed in what I was doing and my thoughts, it was very intense. I was snapped out of my reverie, however, when someone made a call on the radio.

This bread easily made two loaves, and that’s a lot of bread for one person, so I can separate it into three or four loaves. Maybe the tops won’t burn then. Also, I can give some away! Also, I want to try chunks of cheese. I grated the cheese into really small pieces, and it’s good, but it’s not quite the same.

And the jam. My grandma used to make this jam. It’s so simple to make: all you need are strawberries, certo, and sugar. And a bit of lemon juice. The only thing is that my jam didn’t set. It hardened a little, but it’s a mixture between kakigori sauce and jam. It’s delicious! But too runny. And I was talking to my mom, she said that happens sometimes (my mom also makes this jam every spring.. or almost every spring ^^ or used to. whatever!), and there’s not much you can do. But it’s bothering me, because I want it to set! And I don’t know how to fix it. Gah!

Eating these two together is SO delicious. I am very happy. ^^