To my Kazoku!!
Wow, it's been crazy... we've been trying to get into our emails for so long that our time is running shorter. Thanks for all the dearelder.com letters that I can read on days other than P-day!
It was an incredible week. On Sunday, I was pretty discouraged. Missionary work is hard, and it takes a lot of effort (but it is totally worth it!). I had a personal miracle. I was sitting in Relief Society and Sister Diane Doxey came to speak to us. Half way through the meeting, she talked about applying scriptures to us, even putting our names in them. She was in Alma 17 and read a sister's name. And then, as she continued to read, she said: "And it came to pass that the Lord did vist Anderson Shimai with His spirit, and said unto her--Be comforted. And she was comforted." I had never met this woman. It caught me so off guard. We were the only two she mentioned. I couldn't figure out--why me? I am the only "Anderson Shimai" at the MTC. (Shimai is sister in Japanese). Why did the Lord love me enough to step in and give me a miracle on Sunday? Why of all the women at the MTC, all of the sisters, did He choose to minister to me that day? I went to talk to her after, and she said she felt prompted to say my name before the meeting. Her husband served in Kobe, Japan. She leaned over to him and he helped her with the Japanese.
Why me? I'm not sure. But I received an overhwelming conviction that the Lord knows and loves me, and I thought that's what I was supposed ot learn from it... but later I got the prompting that this was so I could know that He is always with me. I do not doubt it. The work is hard, but I am not alone. I feel a strength that is not my own lifting me.
I wish I could tell you more about missionary work, about actually being at the MTC, about everything else. I really just want to tell you all the most important things though, and that is that the Lord is with us.
There are so many miracles! Did I tell you that the speaker (I think it was last week... the international MTC speaker) went to Japan too? I feel like the Lord is sincerely preparing us. I also felt like my experience Monday was in part because of my family's faith. I really did. Thank you for your faith and prayers, we honestly feel it and I know that prayer works!
On other news, I'm wearing my skirt from my sister with my coat from my brothers, thinking how much I love all of you! Also, they serve sugar cereal here at the MTC on Sundays... My sisters are prepping their kids and they didn't even know it! Yeah! Our teacher last night was speaking Japanese SO FAST on purpose! When we practice as companionships we often are given a description of a person to "be." One of my fake investigator profiles was someone who was running away to Canada to marry her boyfriend. So, I had to answer questions about that scenario in class... just to clear things up - this was not type cast! But, it was really funny as I tried to get through that...in Japanese no less. :) I'm beginning to understand a little more Japanese...which is so exciting! We are teaching about 3 investigators (our teachers...) and we start the TRC (Teaching Resource Center) tomorrow... and we get to seek guidance to help the TRC volunteers learn from wherever they are in real life. I really felt charity for our investigator Yoshi San in our last lesson. We are working on "How to Begin Teaching" from Preach My Gospel, which is wonderful... and I felt so much love. I felt the gift of discernment a little bit, through calling upon charity and the Holy Ghost, as we tried to find out his needs - in Japanese. Even though it was just our teacher, I felt those real feelings that are prepping us for the mission field and even that one experience has changed forever how I want to teach. I feel that love everyday, and the Lord has been so merciful in helping me learn things anew. He truly is refining me. I love our district. I felt this week that these are more than 19 year old boys, they are missionaries set apart to serve the Lord. There is a POWER at the MTC.
In other news! (again) Thank you SO MUCH for all of your letters! I love faith promoting things. It truly is such a great work, I've had letters from extended family and friends, and I love getting them! thank you so much for your love and support! I realized this week that 18 months is longer than I thought, and still so short... it is like a time warp, but it is incredible. I know this is where I am supposed to be and I TESTIFY that God is watching over all of us. You have a Heavenly Father who loves you and wants the best for you. I am so proud and happy for all of your righteous choices! What good friends you are to me, my family. I LOVE YOU FOREVER! I know that the Lord has you in His hands. :)
With all the Love I Have,
pictures... can't be loaded at the MTC! I'm sorry, know that I am taking some and I love you!
To learn more about the TRC http://www.mtc.byu.edu/vol-opportunities.htm
Sister Jen volunteered before her mission, so she has worked both sides now!