Monday, October 27, 2014


*sorry this letter is so scrambled and random...:)

WOW. Where do I start?! First of all, SHAY! IT IS SO SURREAL THAT YOU ARE HOME!!! Literally everyone i meet i say in my awful japanese, `my sister went to hong kong on her mission and got home yesterday!` then once my companion translates that for them they throw their arms around me and are sad for me. hahah its cute. literally so many people did that. so tell me everything. so happy for all of you. such a happy time! let me just say I LOVE JAPAN. Why is America so lame? haha It`s been nothing less than perfect. I have not felt sad or overwhelmed or stressed or scared at all! Such a blessing! All my prayers have been filled only with gratitude. I`m so happy here! I dont know how its possible but i feel right at home. I really do. Heavenly Father is blessing us so much, all of us! Can you feel the crazy amount of blessings??? LOOVEE ITTTT. okay i]ll try to give you deets real fast.

The flight--ew. haha but i sat with Humphreys and Kittaka Shimai so we just slept on each other and it was great. When we arrived in Japan, Yamashita Kaicho and Sister Yamashita were soooo sweet! they spoke english ...hallelujah haha... and the assistants and everyone was soo nice. I probably looked like a troll but..sister missionaries are supposed to look stupid right? The mission home was super nice. We felt bad becuase they fed us and wanted to talk but i felt so sick and dizzy from not sleeping so we went to bed early. The next day we were SOO nervous and excited to meet our comps. but lemme tell you..i got the BEST trainer. We are best friends! Its been so so fun. Her name is Kaitland Walsh, she]s from Draper. She leaves in 6 weeks sad about that. So ill have 2 trainers. Anyway, we are 4 hrs away from the mission home in Toyama. Yep its cold here. i looove it though. Kind of in the city, but i love it. I love riding my bike and looking at all the crazy beautiful things here. The cemeteries are huge..and there are a ton. I love to pray and think about everything while riding my bike. So peaceful. Anyway, its just Walsh Shimai and I in our apt. And there is one set of elders in our ward. The shower is so cool, its like an entire room. The food is weird, its good but super weird. I like cabbage pancakes. EW i ate raw eggs and fermented soy beans on rice and was literally gagging. At the train station one day, we walked into the bathroom and there was no toilet! it was like a hole in the ground and you just squat over it. So i go into the stall and kind of just stare at it for about a minute, walked out and washed my hands. hahah i couldnt do it! The spiders are so big.

Okay mom, dad you werent kidding. I thought japan would for sure be more like america. but let me tell you ....its totally not. After leaving the honbu and traveling 4 hours on a train that is like an airplane, a member lady picked us up and we ate at her house. The cutest old couple! Well we get there and we kneeled...on the floor!!! my legs were NUMB i was in so much pain. and we ate with chopsticks!!! are you kidding me I cant do that!! haha they were all laughing at me. I learned a lot of sarcastic things in japanese in the MTC soooo they thought i was funny. haha We were all just kneeling around this table with us, the old couple, and the elders, laughing our heads off eating fatty meat and weird sushi that is soooo different from american sushi. but i loved that night. haha

as i]m sitting here laughing to myself about everything that has happened, my companion says i do a lot of DAME (not good) things. like i:m just a loud american that waves to everyone instead of bows, i sound sooooo gaijin (foreigner) when i speak its embarrassing.

oh my gosh the WARD . The ward is amazing. truly truly amazing. I spoke on sunday. Yep all in japanese. and he asked me to 20 MINUTES before sacrament meeting. so i got up there and pretty much said i have 6 ppl in my family, my hobbies are running and volleyball, and im from heber. Actually I said this ... haha ...`Zense kara kimashita. ..jodan jodan! America Utah kara kimashita.` (Im from the pre earth life. jokes! i:m from utah). they all laughed, glad it wasn:t one of those awkward try to make a joke but its not funny kind of thing haha.

I can:t believe how amazing the ward is. Its so cute when ppl try to speak english. There is a special spirit here for sure. So on Saturday morning we went and helped set up for the Halloween Party, and there is a young family, they have 2 kids and they both served missions that were helping set up. I needed to buy a bike that day. So they offered to drive us to town like 20 minutes away and help me buy a bike! So them and another member came and it literally took about 4 hours. I felt SO bad but they were SO nice!! AH i love them!! The Halloween party was so fun and a huge success! I finally got to meet all the members and about 4 investigators came. Okay so I have been praying for more confidence in speaking the language and just saying the things i do know how to say. So I went and sat with one of our investigators, her name is Ikemoto san. My comp talking with a member. Anyway we were just talking and she has never been to church before. So i decided to ask her! Be BOLD right? I asked her if she was coming to church tomorrow, it would be fun and I wanted her to come! She said What time?? ....then i had to get my companion. haha So she explained what church was and she said she only needed to stay for an hour. Then Ikemoto san asked `can i stay for all 3 hours??`....uhhhh YES. I was pumped. I was literally hugging on Walsh Shimai and jumping up and down...she probably thought i was a dweeb but i was so excited! After that I asked another one of our investigators! She said it sounded boring...haha. But hey the answer will always be no if i never ask so i:m glad i asked.

My comp is the sister training leader so we:ve had to travel a ton. Iwent on an exchange with a little nihonjin and we visited a cute little old lady who just got baptized. She fed us this kelp tea that literally tasted like boiled sea water, and little chocolates. I played her piano and shared my testimony. Fun. We dont have alot of investigators right now but i am positive we will very soon. We want to get 3 baptisms before Christmas as agift to Christ. Thats our goal as a mission.

This morning i was reading in D&C , i read D&C 20:53. I though of Parkers blessing that he gave to Jaren. That moment I will cherish forever. That was so special parker. I hold that close to my heart. Then I D&C23. Boys--what is your duty?? What do you think Gods will for you is?? Then I read D&C 25 and thought of you mom. Read it, its really good. :).

FAMILY i LOVE YOU. So So so much. Im so happy and so ready to work. I know service brings us so much happiness. Im so grateful for this perfect plan of happiness. Im so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father. He is so real to me, I hope you have each found a special relationship with Him and our Savior and Brother Jesus Christ. `Sometimes we should step back and think of the enormity of our potential and the influence and impact we can have in the eyes of others by caring for our own testimonies.`

I love you. God be with you.
Love, Sister Wilcox

Friday, October 17, 2014

shays lasts

SO WEIRD that shay comes home right as I'm leaving. ahh i'm going to be thinking about you all over the's going to be a crazy weekend for sure. lots and lots of emotions. lots of sad, lots of glad. I'm just grateful that I'm here serving and knowing that the Lord is on my side makes it a little easier. I can't wait to talk to you all on Monday! Let me know what time works for you. My flight leaves at 7:30am so if you don't tell me otherwise, I'll probs call around 6am. Make sure the boys are awake. :) If its easier, I can probs call when we land in Michigan 3:30 (michigan time whenever that is..) Let me know.

Dad- I LOVED hearing about your mish. You never told me that! Crazy! That's like The Other Side Of Heaven material right there! Ah hearing your stories gets me stoooked.
So cool story- at the beginning of the week I got really sick, I couldn't go to class. I felt awful. I did NOT want to be sick while traveling/first few days in Japan! I pleaded with Heavenly Father to heal me and I got a blessing from the choro tachi.The blessing was so powerful and THE NEXT DAY I felt 90% better. It was seriously a miracle, I counted my blessings that day for sure. I have a testimony that God is mindful of each of us!
Hey, I want to share real quick something that means a lot to me. I wrote this to my branch prez, but it is such a testimony to me that God speaks to us.

I've shared with you what I've learned about prayer. I love to pray. It is amazing that there are no barriers between us and God. I can so simply talk to my Father in Heaven whenever I want to or need to. He wants me to cast all my burdens on Him. I should not worry so much while on a mission! I should love to work and work to love the Nihonjin. All I can do is invite. That is so simple! I can do that!

Before the mission, my mom always said, "You can do hard things." That was my motivation for the first few weeks. I can do hard things! But after a while, I changed that motto to "WE can do hard things." The Savior and I. A mission cannot be done alone. I must rely on the Savior to guide me everyday. He is preparing people to hear the gospel, and how can I find those souls who need Christ if I, myself, am not close to Christ? I know with Christ on our side, we can do anything.

I have found out why I have been called on a mission. I know I will plant many seeds in Japan and touch the hearts of many. I know my efforts in Japan will not be wasted. But I am doing this mission for my future children. As I've listened to devotional talks, read my patriarchal blessing, and pleaded to my Father for an answer, He has impressed upon me that I am doing this for my eternal family. From all that I am learning now in these short 18 months, I will be a better mother and a better wife. The adversary will grow stronger and stronger and my children will need a mother whose feet are planted in the soil of truth. My testimony cannot and will not be shaken! I want to lead my family in righteousness and bring up a generation like Helaman's Army!

My life has already changed in countless ways. I will always cherish this MTC experience. This gospel brings true joy. I can never deny the spirit I've felt and the truths I've learned. I'm so grateful for my Savior.

Mom- I read this quote from Pres. Hinckley all the time and i think it relates perfectly for and I.
"Many young women are serving missions. Many are preparing to serve, not because they aren't married or have nothing else to do, but because they have a desire to serve and are therefore being called to the work. The reason so many are going is because in the next generation Heavenly Father will be sending his Priesthood army to earth. He wants to send them to mothers who have been properly trained and taught in the Gospel, and what better training can a young woman have than that of serving a mission?"

I really can't express enough how happy I am to be serving a mission. I thought I had a testimony before, but wow. I can't wait to see how much I will learn in the next very short 16 months. Your friend Mills Kyodai gave a departing devotional to us yesterday. We left the meeting bawling because we were so happy! My heart was beating so fast and I just wanted to jump on a plane and get to Japan that very second. He talked about expectations. A lot of people have the expectation that they won't baptize anyone or hardly anyone will accept the message....sadly I think i did too. But I have been praying and have changed that expectation! The answer will always be no if I never ask! I hope I can find out why Father in Heaven sent me to Japan. I hope I can live up to HIS expectation and work as hard as i can. I hope I can KILL IT in Japan. :) Hey do me a favor--read Teachings of the Presidents of the Church by Heber J. Grant and read the Japan section. and let me know what it says. :)

Sorry for the long email, I've just had so many special experiences!! While we are living in this wicked world, I often get discouraged and feel as if Satan is winning this war. It is so sad! But remember- we outnumber the enemy! The number is STILL 2/3. There are legions of angels fighting with us. I know it. I KNOW if our spiritual eyes could be opened, we would find that we are NEVER alone. I have thought a lot about Bishop Draper and his wife. I've thought a lot about Papa, and all my great grandparents. I have thought about all our unborn children. We are never alone.

Anyway, parks and jare i'm stoked for you to serve your missions. you're gonna love it. shay--how cool that you served a full-time mission. I'm so proud of you. I always want to be like you. i miss you. Gma and gpa wilcox- thank you so much for your letter. i LOVED it. you make me feel loved and special. gma and gpa wadd- i miss you and think of you all the time! hope all is well. I love you!
can't believe BECCA D is already home! ahh so excited for her. becs i love you.

ILOVE YOU ALL. can't wait to get to japan. yep...TOTALLY freaking out but trying not to be afraid. oh heck yesterday in a lesson I said, "Shinko wa Satan kara kimasu."..(Faith comes from Satan). It was during Skype with a nihonjin. i felt SO dumb hahahah. He was like "WHAT???" hahahah. Oh hey he took a pic and told us he'd put it on fb haha so mom check for a guy named Yasuyoshi Miura. :) Also, I'm pretty sure the MTC warmed up raspberry jam and put it on chicken..but it was really good. try it sometime.

ok sorry i have to tell you this funny story- We were trying to SYL (speak your language) like crazy this week. so one day in class we were talking about dogs and in english i was like, "whats that dogs name that starts with shi..??" and Kittaka Shimai says, "OH shinjitsu's!" (means believe/true) and we were crying laughing so hard. we almost had to leave class we were laughing so hard. i know that doesn't sound funny,...i promise it was. haha

I LOVE YOU. next letter will be from NIHON!!!!!!


love, wilcox shimai

Monday, October 13, 2014

10 days

hey fam&friends. げんきですか

how are you? hope you are happy. ok wasn't conference amazing?! WOW keiji wa shinjirarenai desu, ne?! and how cool that some were given in different languages. i thought of shay when hong wong was giving his talk in cantonese! super cool. Mom didn't you love seeing the little Asian kids sing in the general women's meeting? and the nihonjin talk about the temple?! ahh i just seriously can't wait to get back and speak to you and dad in nihongo. legitttt! I didn't bring my conference notes but i loved this quote, "God is not stranger to His servant." I've used that a lot in my lessons. One way to develop a かんけいとかみさま is to serve Him. It's all up to us. It is up to us how far that relationship goes and how well we develop it. God knows us perfectly- we just need to search for Him, pray to Him, serve Him and He will brings things to our remembrance. それわしんじつだとしています! I also loved to listen to Thomas S. Monson. Yogensha wa keiji o ukeru koto ga dekimasu. We witnessed that all weekend! During kojin benkyo, I read D&C 1:37-38. I realize that we are each entitled to that revelation! How cool is that? We are not here to fail, we are here to learn and grow. Every single day you and I can become better. Are we actively seeking those things that will help us learn and grow? I hope I can practice that more and more.

So dad- haha. this was super awkward. I realize that i really am an awkward missionary..YOSH! haha but the other day before devo, i saw Byron..BJ Hunter. haha i was like, "I'm pretty sure i know that guy." so I ask him "hey are you from heber?"
"my parents are.."
I said, " you know Travis Wilcox?" hahah
he was like, "Yaa he was my bishop when i younger! How could i not remember Travis Wilcox!"
..then i just didn't know what to say so i'm like "!"
He said "I'm gonna have to figure out what his number is and give him a call!"
I just said yep! see ya later! haha wow. all i remember is you took me to young mens with you and i had a crush on him when i was 10 years old.

anyyyyyway. only 10 more days in the MTC! what?? No doubt I am so so so so nervous. I don't feel ready to go to Japan! But..will i ever be ready? haha i just need to get there and get to work! I can't wait to start this service and finally be where i'm supposed to be. I'm so grateful to be a missionary. Ah i can't express to you what i've already felt and what i've learned. It's been amazing already and this mission has just begun! I can't wait for the next 16 months. I love love love each of you. Think about you all the time. :) I pray that you feel God's love and know that you have a special place here on earth. You are a child of God! Think about that.

Ai shite imasu! honto ni!!!

love, wilcox shimai