Thursday, April 10, 2014

Meekness and lowliness of heart…

Sunday 6th, 2014


I am grateful that the Lord is able to bless all of us because of missionary service!!  I am SOO happy here in Okinawa, the ward is HUGE and they are all super nice. :) I love them so much.  Since I have become companions with Capener Shimai we haven't had a single argument or disagreement…we just get along.  And it rocks!!  But I am ALSO soooo grateful for all the hardships that I had with Heaton.  If there is one companionship that prepared me for marriage the most I would say it was that one haha and IM SO GRATEFUL FOR IT!   I love her!

This morning I was getting ready and listening to last conference (for the 100th time) haha I love conference just in case you didn't know…AND Ulisses Soares was speaking.  His talk is called 'Be meek and lowly of heart' ITS AMAZING!! Here is one line from it:
"Because the Natural man dwells within each of us, and because we live in a world full of pressure, controlling our temper may become one of the challenges in our lives.  Think for a few seconds how you react when someone does not comply with your desires the MOMENT you want them too.  When people disagree with your ideas, even though you are absolutely sure that they represent the proper solution to a problem.  What is your response when someone offends you, critiques your efforts, or is simply unkind because he or she is in a bad mood?  AT THESE MOMENTS and in other difficult situations, we MUST LEARN to CONTROL OUR TEMPER and convey our feelings with patience and gentle persuasion.  This is our most important within our HOMES and with our ETERNAL COMPANIONS"
I love, love, love that.  One of the greatest attributes of Christ is meekness and lowliness of heart  If there is one thing that I have learned on my mission is the importance of being humble when others offend you or when you feel like you are right.  PRIDE is such a TERRIBLE thing and I want to rid myself of it forever!

I just thought of this scripture in Alma 5: 27-Have ye walked, keeping yourselves blameless before god? Could ye say if ye were called to die at this time, within yourselves, that ye have been made sufficiently humble? That your garments have been cleansed through the blood of Christ, who will come to redeem his people from their sins?
28: Behold, are ye STRIPPED OF PRIDE? I  say unto you, if ye are not, ye are not prepared to meet God.  Behold ye must prepare quickly; for the kingdom of heaven is soon at hand, and such an one hath not eternal life.

BAM! If we are not humble or stripped of pride, we are not prepared to meet God!!! Simple as that! I LOVE ALMA!!  Read the rest of ALMA five because it rocks!!! It changed my life :)

THIS LAST WEEK WE SAW SO MANY MIRACLES!!!  We flew back to Fukuoka because we had to go to the Leadership training meeting with all the other STLs and Zone leaders in the mission.  So yeah…I think I flew on a plane 5 times in the last week and a half!  I was so exhausted but it was SO FUN!  We got to Fukuoka on Monday around 3 and the AP's were like…so you actually aren't leaving until Wednesday!  All the other missionaries had to leave a day early, but just Capener and I were able to have some extra time there which was a huge miracle!  We stayed in the mission home under the temple and it was SUCH AN AMAZING experience!  I may or may not be presidents favorite missionary in the mission :) haha just kidding…but really, he let us watch the general relief society broadcast n his office, we went and walked around the grounds saw all the cherry blossoms around the temple!  President and his wife took Capener Shimai and I out to dinner to a way good Ramen shop and then made us dinner the next night!  IT ROCKED!!  It was just the four of us and we had so much fun!

We came back to our area and found four new investigators and like 5 others with lots of potential!!  We met with one of our investigators last week, she doesn't have tons of interest (the one I told you about that speaks English) but she was really kind and sweet.  We ran into her AGAIN that night as we were walking home which was a huge blessing form the lord.  I am so excited to see where all of them go.  A new family, a young 15 yr old, a Filipino woman, a woman who overcame cancer and the list goes on!

I am running out of time but I love you all so much!  The work is moving forward here and I am so grateful! Thank you for all the updates I love hearing about them! I love you all so much, thank you for the prayers!!!

Love Sharp Shimai

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Excited to be here!

Monday 31, 2014

Konnichiwa from Okinawa :)

Sister Capener was in my same MTC district and we were way good friends :) Love her to death! We have already had a ton of fun together.  Sister Kwak is doing great, she transferred to Okinawa to a place called Urasoe.  I sat next to her on the plane coming here :) yes, we took a plane. I took a bus to Fukuoka and then a subway to the airport and then flew here with 7 other missionaries.  It was about a 90 minute flight.  I have heard that Okinawa is over 1000 miles away from the main island.  Crazy! Sister Kwak was also a Sister training leader in Yamaguchi Zone which was my first zone.  Sister Olsen (she was also in our MTC district and was Sister Capeners companion) also transferred down here with us and she is serving in Okinawa, Okinawa. She gets to work with two huge military branches!  Im so jealous! I want to serve in a military branch so bad!!  The good news is Sister Capener and I get to go on exchanges all over the island with all our Sister missionaries that we are over, so I will get the chance to see alot of places besides mine.  The feel of Naha is way different then where I have been.  The people are waaaay nice. Everyone we stop and talk to on the street listens.  Even if they don't have interest they kindly listen.  The people here are TINY, TINY.  I thought normal Japanese people were SMALL...but these people are like 4 feet tall.  Okinawans kind of have their own little culture, they are still very much Buddhist, and they sort of have their own language.  Its still Japanese but there are some words that are COMPLETELY different... for example, chuuganabira means Konnichwa which means hello.  HA?! So weird...I haven't really heard anyone speaking in this dialect, but if you ask if they speak it , they will.  It will be fun to learn some of their new lingo..I guess.  Haha.  I am living with two other Sisters.  Sister Burgon (who i lived with in Ube my first transfer) and her companion Sister Lewis.  They are both way fun and hard workers!  I feel like I'm back in the MTC with how many of us are here.  Only 3 people from my MTC district aren't in Okinawa right now! Crazy!!

We already have found two way good potential investigators since I got here. One speaks WAY good English, so I'm excited to see where that goes!  We are hopefully meeting with her this Saturday.  As of right now, we don't have any progressing investigators but that's going to change real quick!

I'm serving in a ward here and its HUGE compared to what Ive been use to in previous areas on my mission.  There is probably about 80-100 people in the ward.  Learning their names is sort of a nightmare but I will eventually get it.  The names are WAY, WAY different here.  Takamiyagi is the name of the bishop.  I'm used to names like Kojima, Ikeda, Fujimoto, Tanaka.  To you they probably all sound way foreign but names here are super weird to me, I have never heard them in my life!!  But yeah, love it here!!!  The weather is way nice.  I got pretty sunburned my first day, so I'm going to be lathering on the sunscreen from now on.  The sun is SUPER strong here.

Saying goodbye to Marina Chan in Shimizu was way sad...I love that girl so much.  I really hope that she accepts a baptism date before she moves to America.  Seguchi San is super cute too, I'm going to miss the both of them :(  I loved Shimizu it really was a great area, so many miracles are happening there, it was sad to leave, but I'm way excited to be here!

Conference is coming up!!! I AM SO EXCITED!!! I can't wait. In these last two transfers I think I experienced some of the hardest moments I've ever had on my mission and even in my life maybe...but i look back now and I am SO GRATEFUL for them.  I was able to rely on prayer in way that I never had needed to before.  My testimony of prayer is stronger than it ever has been before.  God Lives.  He hears our prayers. I read in the Bible dictionary the other day under the word 'prayer' and it has changed the way I look at prayer.  I encourage you all to look it up and study and ponder that explanation that is given there.  It has so many amazing things!  I am grateful for all the trails, the Lord knows what he is doing.  Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have been doing this for a looooong time.  I am positive now that they know exactly what they are doing.  I don't even think twice anymore.  I just go and do...even when it doesn't make sense.  I know that his ways are higher than my ways and I don't need to lean unto my own understanding.  He knows all.  He loves us all so much.

Don't ever doubt, only believe. And when you do doubt, pray.  I love you all so very much!!!  I am so grateful for your love and prayers.  They keep me going.  Talk to you next week. Love, Sharp Shimai

p.s. I forgot to answer this in the last email.  On Junkais (exchanges) if I am going to another area my companion always comes with, and then we split in their area. Last transfer was different, we met them half way and then split.  That's why I wasn't in my area for earthquake haha. Don't worry, I'm never traveling alone!