Japan Tokyo Mission 8/13 - 2/15

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Week 4 of the MTC

I am doing pretty well the mtc is treating me fairly  good for now. Lets just say that I am getting use to it and I am actually really having a great time here hahah. Its nice having a strict routine and always being busy. My japanese is slowing making progress! I memorized the missionary purpose in Japanese last week so thats a step, next up the first vision. That will be a real treat for sure. Hopefully I will be able to do it. SO exciting news, I am in the choir for general Relief Society meeting!! I can't wait until Saturday!! Wahhh its going to be a once in a lifetime opportunity! I am very lucky to be blessed with this. I am still not sure how I made it in the choir because I have like THE worst singing voice and I have no choir experience. But i don't even care!! I am just so excited that I am going to be singing in it!! 
I see Jake Brown all the time! So far he seems to be doing good, he might just be acting tough around me, I couldn't tell you for sure!  But it's fun actually talking to him, He never has talked this much to me before, I love it hahah. We pretty much were in the same boat about coming to the mtc  having no prior knowledge of Japanese, unlike everyone else in our district. We aren't in the same zone/branch so that's lame but I still see him all the time! I only have like 4 and half more weeks here I can't believe its already gone by so fast!! 
So my sleeping hasn't gotten much better. I am like sleep talking all night long and doing weird stuff haha, but I do have hope, my companion said that last night I was sleep talking all in Japanese.. Well if only I could do that when I was awake!! Tonight is our last night for having our devotionals at the Marriott center how sad.. I love that little freedom of crossing the street and and being outside of the mtc for a few hours.. The only bummer is that I am going over to BYU when we leave! I am so glad that UTAH WON! On Saturday I wore red and I also wore red on Sunday too. It was so crazy walking back to my little dorm thing and hearing the game!  The whole time I was hoping that Utah was going to win! and sure enough they did!!  Brandon told me that the BYU fans were like throwing garbage and stuff at the refs, what a shame.

Thanks you so much for the package!! what a treat! It's great getting some of my favorite foods and such, and yes I just got grannies and grandpa's  package yesterday!! Lets just say everyone was jealous of me when they saw me walking in with that huge box! I am so grateful for them.
I can't wait until I get to Japan and I get the chance to change lives in so many important ways. It will be the best feeling ever!  It is crazy! only 17 more months.. I am so afraid they are going to go by way too fast!  I love my mission so much and I am so grateful to be serving the Lord, he has taught me so much in my life and I don't know where I would be if it wasn't for Him!! 
I love you so much and hope all is well :) keep having fun
Sister Brown

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Week #3 of the MTC

So I am pretty sure that the high of the MTC has worn off! Things are getting pretty hard again! I keep realizing how much I still have left to learn and I have so little time. So that is starting to be a little stressful. But hopefully thing are starting to pick up again. I am excited that Jake Brown is going to be here. It will be great to see a face that I recognize and know. I hope that he is in my branch because yesterday we had three branches leave so it is pretty small now which stresses me out because that means I am more likely to be called on to say a prayer or speak in Sacrament meeting and I am no way ready for that!!! Teaching our investigator is getting better too. I am just having such a hard time because I don't understand a whole lot of stuff and  I have a really hard time forming  a sentence. Everything in Japanese is backwards from English so that is super frustrating. But Heavenly Father is watching out for me and has sent me some of the best teachers in the whole wide world! Powell Sensei and Heaton Sensei are like true disciples I am so grateful for them. They really are helping me out a ton. I am doing my best not to get too overwhelmed but you know me.. I think the hardest thing I have had to realize while  being here is that I can't do it all on my own I really have to rely on the Lord and that has been such a hard lesson for me to learn. the mtc has been such a humbling place. I have also found that being at the mtc has really tested my testimony. In many ways you would think that being here would only make it grow but that is not the case I have really had to look deep into the gospel and really look at  my testimony. I know that with out a doubt this church is THE true church. I have a hard time saying my testimony in English now haha because I am trying to think like in Japanese and its just throwing everything off, here is a sentence that I believe. It is in Japanese

Iesu Kirirsuto no agani ni kansha shimasu. haha blahh its all good though. I am very excited to go to the Temple today! That always helps with everything. It makes me happy there, which is a really good thing. So yeah!  
The gluten free food here is really good.. surprise haha I probably have gained a few pounds I hope not.. I have been lifting weights so that always good and doing a little cardio. I play four square like a champ so its a great feelings know that I am working out a little. It is a good stress reliever. But yeah the food isnt too bad so I am enjoying that. Like it could be so much  worse!
On sunday night we had a really great devotional. Have you seen the movie 17 miracles or Ephraim's rescue? well the guy who made both of the movies came and talked with us so that was really awesome those two movies look AMAZING! I want to see them when I get home! You guys should check them out!! Its funny the simple things I am finding joy in now. Like when we watched the Testament I was loving it! any excuse to watch tv or a movie right?! 
My companion is so kind hearted I am very lucky that I have her. She has taught me so much! I am so grateful for her!
So yesterday while teaching my investigator, she said a word and we didn't know what it was so we were looking it up in the dictionary. But I have no idea who to look things up in it because its all in hiragana and I can't read that yet. well the word we looked up the definition and it said smeared yellow... haha well I was like what the heck that can't  be right. She told us that when she prays and reads the scriptures she feels, "smeared yellow" haha we were just so confused so we asked her to look up the word for us and like literally right across the page from it was the correct word and that was hope so now I know and I will never make that mistake ever again!! 

Things are good here but its going by so fast! I  can't really believe that i am on the start of week four!!! The church is so true and I love this gospel so much. I also have a testimony of the Book of Mormon and know it is the word of God!!

Talk to you all later!! Write me 
XOXO Brown Shimai.

                                                     we have this picture at home!!

 me and the nihonjin (japanese missionaries)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Second Week of the MTC

This week has been soooooooo much better. I am actually used to my whole new schedule. I still don't have any idea what people are saying when they are speaking Japanese but its getting better. I now can pray in Japanese and I can even say a few things about my testimony so that is actually really exciting. I am also starting to learn Hiragana So I know about 20 of those characters I only need to learn 26 more.. but that is just one alphabet there are about 3 others but I am not going to learn those they said to just focus on the one I am learning now. So it is coming, slowly but surely. I am so grateful for my sensei he is amazing and really is such a great help. It is crazy to think that he is only like 22 and already has such a great knowledge of Japanese and can be such a great teacher. I really feel the spirit in class. We do all these things called mogis, (skits) and its crazy how much you can learn and feel the spirit in a pretend investigator. The other day we got out investigator to pray that was amazing. She was so hesitant at first, in fact the first thing she told us is that she doesn't want to be baptized but she said a prayer and it was so amazing, So I am really hoping that she will change her mind about it. ( she isn't a real investigator she is pretend) Even with that fact the spirit is really there and its awesome. But I am a disaster in the lessons because we are trying not to write a script haha so like I have no idea how to form sentences or anything the only real sentence I have memorized is God loves you! haha so i mean i guess i could just say that over and over again but i don't really think that would be the best thing. It's funny because there are like huge awkward pauses when nothing is being said and we are all just staring at each other.  But it is crazy being able to see the huge change from  just the 3rd day of being here and teaching her compared to our 6th lesson with her.  

I am going to do my best to look for Elise!!! I better see her or I am going to be mad I told her where I am living and what class room I am in.  Oh Mitch was a cute critter, gotta love that kid :) and I really am excited for Jake to come. I know that we aren't like really close but it will be great hopefully he is in my zone! Because next Monday a bunch of people from my zone are leaving so hopefully he can be in my zone then we would see each other a ton. He is going to love it here. At first he might hate it and want to come home and cry all the time in the shower but after the first week it gets better. It is still hard as ever but its getting better so that makes me happy!! Make sure to tell me when Amy gets her call I hope it is to TOKYO!!
I don't know how Kate is doing it. Her mission seems so hard and such a stresser and I thought the first week here was hard haha I am very grateful for where I am going and the trials I am having compared to Kates. But that is such an amazing experience. Kate is going to be the best missionary and I am so happy for her, this will bless her life so much! You should always send me her emails  I  just love her so much!! 
Thank you so much for the packages I really love getting them and I really love getting mail. It helps me out a ton. It makes me realize that yanno E you can do this. People think that it would make me home sick, but it doesn't, it makes the days better when you have been tested so hard and been thrown heaps of Japanese and the gospel in my brain. It is relaxing getting letters and packages. I loved the HiChews ahh those are my favorite and those cookies are delicious!! I love a good ginger snap! Next time you go you need to try some of their peanut butter they have like all these really good flavors haha try one and pick your favorite and send it to me with a spoon and I will eat it!  SO I really miss del taco....  but you don't need to send that to me because I don't know how that will work out. Maybe send me like a coke.
That letter from Tim Brown was so kind! I really appreciated it, as weird as this might sound everything he said I know exactly what he is meaning. The first week really tested me and took me to my wits end. My hand was clear up here!! Past my head and as high as I could reach :) haha  but it was good. I am very thankful for that. The two other girls in my room are pretty cool. One is a HUGE BYU fan so that makes it hard she talks like they are the greatest thing in the whole world.. It gets pretty annoying. She is also from Texas and that's just a whole nother story. Some people take way too much pride in themselves and where they are from, the best part is she has only lived there for like 2 years.. so can you really consider yourself from Texas??  But the other one is so sweet and is from Wyoming and went to Utah State I really like her. We have a couple of inside jokes together so its great! Me and my companion are doing so much better and are getting a long better. We just have complete opposite personalities but in a way I think is a good thing. but it would be cool if Alisa was my companion, that would be the bomb.
I Love you so much and the things that I have learned this week are:
1- faith, don't let your faith that you already have disappear. At times I think we tend to do that. We need something and need the Lord so deeply I think we forget about the faith we already have right now. WE must always keep our faith we have and let that faith grow and develop into more faith. You know, you can never have too much faith!!. 
2- It is the Lords will not mine. I am His servant and I am doing His work. He will answer all of my prayers but He will do it on His time and not on mine!
 XOXO Brown Shimai


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

First week at the MTC

So the MTC is alright. I wouldn't say it is my favorite place in the world. I can totally think of places that I'd rather be right now that's for sure. Lets see if I was only going to be here for a couple of days and English speaking I would love it for sure.. Its not that i don't like the MTC its the fact that I am learning  Japanese right now.. that's what makes this hard.. I don't know what anyone says to me and I don't know how to read or anything. This week my teacher finally said something in English to the class and I was blown away it felt so good to finally understand something coming out of his mouth.  This week we are also starting to use Hiragana. So that's all the writing with the symbols. Lets just say I have a ton on my plate right now. As of now I am trying to memorize my testimony. but that's not coming so well. The vocabulary is very very hard and I can never remember anything!!  But its only been one week. 

On Sunday we did our Temple walk. I almost ran home because of how overwhelmed I am. But no worries I am getting better.. I think at least... The food is pretty good considering the fact that it is gluten free I think I have gained like 8 pounds... awkward. Just joking I haven't gained anything at all. well I don't think I have all my clothes still fit so that is a good sign!! I am not sleeping very well. 10:30 is just way to early. I stay awake probably until like 11:30 or later just laying in the bed thinking about everything so that's not very good. But waking up is no problem at all. My companion is Owens Shimai (shimai) means sister. She is 23 and from Arizona. We get along pretty well. But we are complete opposites. So sometimes that's good and sometimes that bad.. It all just depends. I am the senior companion so I think that bugs her a little bit. I am trying though. I am praying for charity so that I can learn to have more charity and be more kind and kind hearted and see things from her point of view.  Well my room has 4 people in it so that is nice all of us are going to Tokyo and my whole district is all going to Tokyo so that will be fun!

Today we are going to the Temple and I can't wait I REALLY need it right now. I just need all the prayers I can get because I feel like I am getting no where. We are also going to the devotional tonight at the Marriott center. If you start missing me a lot just drive past and kidnap me.. just joking that wouldn't be very good. I only wish that after I have had such a hard day and been struggling so bad it would be nice to get in my own bed and my own shower where I don't have to wear flip flops and talk with you and dad. but I can't so oh well. 

But the MTC is good. I can tell that I am growing so much and I really love it. I have seen some people I know.  I have seen people from my youthlinc group. 3 to be exact. I have seen Jeff Hunter a ton. I have seen Haley Ackerman as well.I think that's all the people I know here right now. I am living on campus so that's really nice too! Hopefully I see Elise when she comes! chances are I will see Jake Brown we might even be in the same zone. it all just depends.   I am excited to get a package I love getting mail even when its just a little letter from dear elder that says hey I love you. I have gotten the most mail in my district haha its pretty funny actually.They all have a bet that I will get mail 5 out of the 6 days you can get it!! So hopefully that stays true haha.  Tom has sent me one package with a few talks in it and some great advice, one letter and one postcard. Lizzy sent me a letter and so did Miss Rydalch!! Well I love you guys so much and I can't wait to hear from you again!! 

That story from President Call gives me the faith that I will make it through the MTC and become a great missionary!! 

Brown Shimai.