4 January 2015

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Hello everyone. How was New Years? My New Years was fun. The Japanese
love New Years. It’s bigger then Christmas. It’s a big deal to see the
first sunset of the year. So that what we did. And I was able to use
my fun new camera and get pictures. I tried to do a time laps but I
don’t know if I did it right so we will see how that works later. I
love my new camera. I haven’t been able to take it on a bike ride yet
because it has been to cold to ride bikes but Im Getting some fun
stuff. This week has been absolutely crazy. We have been to a member
house for lunch and dinner everyday this past week. And since it is
rude not to eat we had to eat A LOT  of food, it’s disgusting how much
we ate. So our diets start Monday 🙂 I never Te breakfast because I
was so full from the day before. I never got to the point of throwing
up but it was close every time. Oh the things we do for the love of
our ward members. I seriously can’t imagine how the missionaries in
America do it. They get fed so much. It makes me very grateful I was
called to Japan. All though they seriously eat a lot too. They just
don’t feed the missionaries very often. It was fun though. The ward
members are great. This year is going to fly by which makes me excited
and sad. I really can’t think about it to much. So excited to be done
and see my family and have a somewhat normal life again, but sad
because my time in Japan as a missionary is coming to an end. I still
have a while, I know, but it has already gone by so fast that half
year is even quicker. Knowing that it’s coming to an end helps me slow
down and appreciate were I’m at in the moment. The people I get to
teach and meet. And the relationship I have with my Father in Heaven
is so much stronger. I’m so grateful for the decision of serving a
mission. I know it’s going to help me and my family beyond what we can
see. And all of you have helped me get here. It was a lot of years of
preparation for me to realize this is were the Lord needs me to be.
But I’m glad I listened to the spirit that day. I’m so grateful for
all of your support and love. I love you all so much!!! I pray for
each and every one of you!!!

Brox Shimai
Sent from my iPad

28 December 2014

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Christmas was ok. It was sooo fun being able to talk to my family. Oh how I miss them. We went to visit some members on the ward and the husband ( who is less active) was the only one home. But he was really nice to us, I guess that is really rare. Usually when missionaries go over he is always mean. But he came out and talked to us for a little bit. His daughter is on a mission , I think he was able to talk to her that day and that may have soften his heart that day. They celebrate Christmas but it isn’t as big as New Years. There New Years is huge. For this New Years we will be going our to watch the first sunrise of the year. It will be a good opportunity to speak to people. I’m excited.

23 December 2014

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This weekend has been busy and fun. Everyone is getting into the
Christmas spirit. They don’t have Christmas like how we have Christmas
but the Christmas spirit is still strong. Last Sunday we got a huge
Christmas package from the ward. It’s full of candy and stationary and
tights so we can stay warm. It’s getting really cold here. The coldest
month is Feburary  so it’s not something I’m looking foreword to. In
another week it will be a new year and I will be coming home not to
far off. 🙂 I’m enjoying my time here. It’s been a struggle trying to
meet with everyone because of the holidays. We have been teaching this
one girl who is a less active. She has been less active for like 10
years. She got baptized when she was 16 and was active for 2 years and
then went inactive after that. Her name is Megumi Shimizu. She is my
age. I have really enjoyed teaching her. She wants to come back to
church but her job makes it impossible and she doesn’t remember
anything about what we believe. So we have been teaching her the
basics. We have an investigator who makes it really hard not to just
drop her. Jk . I would never drop someone who wants to keep learning
but she is so frustrating. We went to her house that is Avery long
bike ride and she wasn’t home. We had an appointment with her and even
confirmed it the day before but she wasn’t home. Ugh. It didn’t help
that, that day it was snowing/ raining. It was freezing cold that my
hands hurt soo bad. But we survived. She is almost impossible to make
an appointment with. And then our other investigator has just been to
busy with work and everything. The weather has been rough but things
have been good. The ward members are awesome and So fun. Sunday we had
a little event with the mission president and we were able to watch a
part of “it’s a wonderful life”. I love that movie. Tomorrow we have a
huge Christmas event with the mission. I’m so excited. It’s going to
be so fun. And the the next day I get to call you all!! I’m so
excited! I more then likely will be bawling my eyes out when I see you
all because I just miss you all so much! I’m waiting to open my
presents from my package until Christmas Day. Well family that’s about
it from me. I love this gospel and I’m so grateful for my savior Jesus
Christ. He is the reason we have Christmas. Let’s not forget the
importance of Christmas. The real message of Christmas. I know this
church is true. I see miracles everyday. If you are struggling, please
get on your knees. He is there and listening. I love you everyone!!
Merry Crhistmas!! See you in two days!!
Chad and Karol congrats on the baby boy! I can’t wait to see all these
new babies when I get home :-).

Sent from my iPad

15 December 2014

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It’s getting cold outside and I hate it. It snowed once but the snow
didn’t stick and it was literally only for 20 minutes. This week was
ok. I was sad when Handy Shimai left. But I know it will work out for
her and she is doing what’s right for her. So as for Christmas calls I
will be calling you at 10:00am my time on Christmas Day which means it
will be 5 pm Christmas Eve for you guys. ( I think, I’m pretty sure)
one thing is for sure I will be calling you at 10 am my time.

We had some great things happen this week. An investigator that the
missionaries have been working with forever has decided he wants to
get baptized next month. We are so excited for him and his wife. His
wife got baptized 10 years ago. So I’m pretty sure she is beyond
excited. As a ward we will have two baptisms next month. The Elders
are working with both of them. But we are all excited regardless. My
companion got into a bike wreck this last week.but everyone is ok. On
Friday my companion and I got to go to a Christmas concert with one of
our PI’s. We had so much fun. She invited herself to church which was
awesome. She said that when she doesn’t work can she come to church.
We were excited to hear that. Her name is Noriko. She use to live in
Utah for 3 months with an LDS family when she was young. She went to
church every week with them and when she saw missionaries she got
really excited because she had no idea we had a church out here. She
is older now. She is married and has 2 kids. I’m excited to work with
her some more. She is coming to our Christmas party so I’m excited for
that. Other then that nothing exciting has happened. Mom I got your
package. Thank you!

Love you all!!!

Love Brox Shimai

Sent from my iPad

9 December 2014

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Well another transfer has taken place and I’m staying put in Hachioji.
I will probably be staying put for a while. My new companion is Hotu
Shimai and Handy Shimai. Hotu is from Australia. She is way cool. I
think this transfer will be good. These last two days have been
absolutely insane. Handy Shimai had to go home so that why I didn’t
get my email out yesterday. We have been home packing things for her.
It’s been crazy. I’m way sad about it too. Handy Shimai was my very
first companion and then I was her last. My heart breaks for her. She
is defiantly struggling but I think she will be ok. So now it’s just
me and Hotu.,hey when do you want to do Skype phone home. I can do it
from dec 22 – 25 so for you guys that’s the 21-24 th. When would be
best for you guys? I’m so excited to call home. I’ve been getting home
sick. Especially now that Handy left I’m way sad. I’m now senior
companion. I seriously feel like I can’t do anything. The language is
stil hard for me. My tutoring lessons are done and now I feel like all
of my training wheels have been swept from under me. Now that I’m
senior comp. I will be the one depended on to know what people are
saying and what to say next. I’m a little overwhelmed. I definitely
need prayers this season. Thank goodness it’s only one Christmas. I
really don’t think I could miss two.well family I love you.

Brox Shimai

30 November 2014

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This week was crazy busy. We had so much going on. Wednesday during
eikaiwa ( English class the missionaries teach) we had thanksgiving
dinner instead of class. It turned out so awesome! We were able to buy
a couple of turkeys and we made mash potatoes and gravy and pumpkin
pie and cranberry sauce. It wasn’t quite home but it was pretty dang
close. And our students loved it. It was so fun. We did have our
follow up appointments with our miracle people from last week but of
coarse there is opposition in all things right? We only taught one of
them. She was so nice and was wondering why we were missionaries. She
believes in God but her husband is a different religion and so she
says she would never change. She was just making it hard. We asked her
if we could continue to teach her but in a very nice why she said no.
She wasn’t willing to take action. She didn’t want to go to church or
do anything like that. She was so nice and we are grateful she at
least let us in to listen to our message. We wouldn’t have changed
anything about the lesson or anything so we know we did what we were
suppose to.  Our other lady we had an appointment with wasn’t home.
She did tell us that sometimes she goes to places with her daughter.
We figured she may have forgotten. So we will keep visiting her until
she is home. The third lady we referred to the other Sisters since
sister Handy and I were the ones who found her we gave it to sister
Handy and her companion. They said there appointment went great. That
lady also said she wasn’t willing to change but she will listen. We
will run with that. But she is just the cutest thing. When the sisters
were sharing the message the husband didn’t want to participate but
then they started talking about family history and he turned the tv
off and joined them. He brought out his family history and they had a
great discussion. And he said ga come back next week and we will talk
more about family history. So we think they found the key to unlock
there hearts. We did splits this week with the Kofu sisters. It takes
like 2 hrs to get to Kofu from where we are. But man, that train ride
is beautiful. I took a video of parts of it. The mountains filled with
trees that are all the colors of fall. And then the clouds were low
and the view was just breathtaking. Sorry ky I think this video will
make you miss Nagoya ( I think). Well fam, that about sums my week up.
Love you all!!!

Brox 姉妹

23 November 2014

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Wow is all I can say. I have never had such an opportunity to be led
by the spirit so much. Last Saturday was the best day of my mission
thus far. Ok so let me back track a little. Looking back now I can see
gods hand in everything we had done that led up to this great day. A
couple of weeks back (like 3 weeks) Bickmore Shimai and I went to
visit a member. It was a spur of the moment thing. We never made an
appointment with them we just decided to drop by and try and get a
picture of there family so we could update our member book with recent
pictures. As we stopped by this families house, not all of them were
home so we weren’t able to get a picture, but we asked if we could
pray together and pray for success around their neighborhood. We left
their house and immediately after we saw this lady outside her house
and we noticed an American flag style bike cover so that’s how we
started our conversation with her. The her daughter came out and we
started talking to her too. I can’t even remember how the conversation
went but we asked if we could visit again and they said oh ha sure.
They did say they weren’t very religious but we could stop by and talk
again.
Ok so that is one being set up.
Ok so there is another lady whom we talked to when we were on our way
to visit another ward family. She lived on this ridiculously steep
hill.when we talked to her she was interested in English. Well that
was a couple of weeks back as well and honestly we forgot all about
her.
Ok well I will get back to her in a minute.
Ok for this last lady, I was on splits with Handy Shimai and we went
to visit a less active on the spur of the moment.again this was about
2 weeks ago.  On the way there Handy Shimai was telling me that every
time she has gone to visit this less active no one has ever been home.
But we decide to go and try anyway. We get there and she was home. So
we were able to visit with her for a little bit. We set up a project
to come back and help her with her house to clean up the yard. We
finished and Handy wanted to do a little housing around that area so
we did. This is were we met that old lady who sang for us. ( the video
I sent before). Well we were housing when we came up to a house and we
were talking through the video doorbell thing when all of a sudden we
could hear that they hung up on us. So as we were turning around to
walk away this old lady comes out with a big smile on her face. She
knew right away we were mormon missionaries and that we didn’t drink
coffee or tea. She was excited to see us. But she said to come back a
different day because at that moment she was busy doing a family
thing.
Ok so now for Saturday.
For us these were normal days. The only lady I really saw true
potential with was the last one when she said she wanted to see us
again. On Friday night Bickmore Shimai and I were making our plans for
the next day and to be honest there were so many other things we
probably should have done but this plan just felt right. Saturday
rolls around and it started off as a disaster. I missed my tutoring
appointment because I thought it was at a different time and then we
were waiting for a member to come by but I got the day wrong. So it
just started off wrong. For our plan we decided to meet with the First
Lady and daughter and then we were going to visit a less active and
then visit the third lady.
Ok so our day starts as a disaster .we get to the First Ladies house
and we knew she would talk to us but we didn’t expect to much out of a
gospel sense. We get there and she is way excited to see us. The
mother was there but the daughter wasn’t. That’s ok. We get to talking
and of coarse we try and bring up church and the gospel she tells us
she isn’t religious. Ok that’s ok, but we keep talking in casual
conversation and then we try again and this time we bring out the BOM.
With the BOM we have a piece of paper that is called ” Questions of
the Soul” and it has common questions people have like where do we
come from, what is our purpose, etc. so we bring out this piece of
paper and she starts pointing to all sorts of different questions that
she has had. So then we look one up and have her read the BOM and she
loved it. She did tell us t hat she does believe in God and she prays
everyday because her mother told her to do that when she was young. So
she prays and gives thanks but that is as far as she goes with
religion. So then asked how she prays and then we brought out one of
our pamphlets and opened to the page about prayer. It has a picture of
a couple folding there arms. We had her read the part of how to pray,
example… Dear Heavenly Father, blah blah blah, in the name of Jesus
Christ amen. She started trying to memorize the order of how to do it
and we told her she could keep the pamphlet for herself but she
wouldn’t take it. Then we tried to give her the BOM and she wouldn’t
take that either. She says when she reads she gets dizzy so she didn’t
want to take it. But we did get a return appointment to read it with
her. WE JUST GOT A NEW INVESTIGATOR! What! Ok we were really happy and
super excited.
So then we continue to our next place and that was to visit this less
active. On the way there out of no where Bickmore Shimai and I
remembered about this one lady we met on the way to a different
members house and it turned out that the less active we were going to
visit lived by this lady whom we had totally forgotten about before.
So the less active wasn’t home ( or just didn’t answer) so we decide
to go visit that lady and talk to her some more. We get there ring her
doorbell and she comes out. And we talked forever with her. She had so
many questions about Christianity and she asking hard questions about
war and why Christians are always at war. To be honest I did not
understand Hardly any of it. Then she straight up aske out of no where
that if she did find our church to be true then what did we want her
to do after that and then we told her we would want her to get
baptized but all we can do is teach it is up to you and your own free
will if you want to accept and be baptized. Then she talked some more
and in the end she said, I have interest come back again, wow!! By
this point we were mind blown. We couldn’t believe it. WE JUST GOT 2
INVESTIGATORS  in one day. We were on cloud 11. Man we were so happy
and we knew this was the most inspired day we have ever had. But we
weren’t even close to finished.
We leave to visit the last person we planned on visiting. And I knew
from my previous encounter that it would go well. We get there and we
ring the doorbell. We say hi through the video doorbell thing and she
hangs right up and comes out. She told us to come in. As we follow her
inside I turn to Bickmore Shimai with a huge grin on our faces because
we knew it was going to go well. We sit down and get to know her a
little bit. She tells us that her son use to be an investigator 30
years ago and she went to church with him a couple of times. We think
she also took the lessons but we weren’t quit sure through the
language barrier. Her best friend was mormon and that friend died last
year. That friend was also a less active member. So she knew we didn’t
drink tea or coffee. She gave us some mugicha ( and herb tea) and a
piece of chocolate cake. She was just the cutest thing. All of these
ladies are grandmothers and probably in there 70’s. So we ask her if
we could share a short message and she said yes. We stared with a
prayer and opened the BOM to the Questions of the Soul page. She
picked out the question, When you someone important to you dies. We
opened it up and talked about heaven. It was very simple and brief.
Then I felt like I needed to tell her something, I told her that God
led us to her. She looked at me and I knew she felt the spirit. We
finished with a prayer and just the way she was acting I knew she was
feeling the spirit. She did too. She said she liked that feeling and
she wants to keep feeling it. She did tell us that she didn’t want to
go to church but she does want to learn. Then her husband walks in. He
is the nicest guy ever. They are such a cute old couple. We started
talking to him too but not really about church stuff, but he k ew who
we were to. And then he said, ya come back next week. We can’t count
him as an investigator yet but she is defiantly one. WE GOT 3 NEW
INVeSTIGAtORS! All in one day!!  What the crap! This just doesn’t
happen here. We were so happy.
And when we thought the miracles had stopped ( because those were some
pretty big miracles), we started to walk home and we went a different
way the. The usual route we take. As we are walking we walk past a man
and he says, Misionaries?, we stopped and said yes. Then he told us he
was a less active member and has been for years. We had a fun
conversation about America, and then Bickmore Shimai said,” ya come to
church tomorrow, Im teaching Sunday school, so you should come. ” we
didn’t think he would come because most of them don’t, but he showed
up the next day. It was amazing. This is what I thought a mission was
like. That you would see miracles like this all the time. But man it
was a great day!!! These people are so prepared to hear the gospel,
and I feel so lucky to be a part of it. Thank you all for all of your
prayers. I love you all!!

Brox Shimai

17 November 2014

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Well this week was pretty uneventful but crazy all at the same time.
My companion got sick and is still sick so a lot of our time has been
spent indoors. The other two sisters have been switching off every
other day who is sick. So sometimes I would just go on splits with the
unsick one and we would go out and dendo ( do missionary work). The
other two sisters have stress related sicknesses so, on gets really
bad migraines the other one just gets depressed. So it’s been crazy!
This morning we had a service project and we went to the park to clean
up. I got a letter from Angela yesterday. Angela was my investigator
in my last area. She wrote me and told me that she is having a hard
time right now. She has hard core trusting issues. She has really bad
depression as well so it’s hard for her most of the time. She told me
how she appreciated my letter I wrote her when I left and she told me
I was her favorite, she really felt like I truly cared for her. I
think she might be giving up on the whole church thing. I think that’s
what she was saying, I don’t know, it was really hard to understand
her letter because her English is not that good. any ways , if you
guys could pray for her I would really appreciate it.  We had a really
good lesson with one of our investigators last week. We did a candy
bowl and we said if at anytime anyone feels the spirit to grab a candy
from the bowl and we will pause the lesson for a little bit and talk
about what we feel. We gave her a list of things of what the spirit
might feel like. She keeps telling us she doesn’t know what the spirit
feels like. So that’s why we decided to do the candy bowl. It worked.
She felt the spirit. It was awesome. I don’t know where her heart is
when it comes to really wanting to join the church. She makes it
impossible. We keep asking her to come to church but she just doesn’t
want to make it a priority. She said she would be baptized if she ever
got an answer but she keeps telling us she isn’t getting one. I asked
her if she believed that Joseph Smith was a true prophet and if he
really restored the gospel. She said yes, but still is unwilling to
accept that as her answer. She is a difficult one. Well family that’s
all I have for now. I love you all.

Brox Shimai

9 November 2014

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Hello everyone. So this week has been great. Last Saturday I went on
splits with Handy Shimai (my MTC companion)  and we had a blast. First
of all, all of our plans were changed or canceled the last minute. So
we did nothing we planned on doing. So we kind of just made it all up
as we went. We went to a less active house to see if we could do some
service for her this week. We will be cleaning up her yard. But no one
has been able to get a hold of her to confirm so we decided to visit.
Handy Shimai didn’t think she would be home because every time they
try and visit she isn’t there. Well she was home and we were able to
confirm a day and time with her. But the coolest part was what
happened after. We decided to do some housing around that area and we
ran into a lady who was walking an older lady around the block. This
lady worked at the old folks home and she likes to take them out for
walks every once in a while. So this worker lady saw us and started to
talk to us and she wanted us to talk to this old lady. It was the
cutest thing. The old lady use to sing when she was younger and still
loves to sing, so I got it on video for everyone to see. It’s the
cutest thing. The worker lady was so grateful for us for stopping and
talking because it made the other ladies day. Well we continued to
house and of coarse we weren’t getting any where. No one wanted to
listen to our message. But then we came to this one house and we were
giving our introduction over the voice box speaker to this lady and
when we thought she hung up on us she came out of her house and
started to talk to us. She was busy at that moment because she had
family over and they were putting there grandkids in kimonos and
taking pictures but she told us to come back again. So this week Handy
Shimai and Brown Shimai are going to visit her. It was a GREAT day.
And then on top of that I found out that the girl I first found when I
first got to Japan, my FIrST day there has been taking the lessons
this whole time and wants to be baptized but her father won’t let her
yet. But I couldn’t believe it! I had no idea. I remember her too. She
was a young teenager and she had a CTR ring on her finger because she
did a Home Stay in Utah with an LDS family. She was only there for a
couple of weeks or months but she loved it and they gave her that ring
as a present. I was just so happy and grateful to hear that someone I
found was determined to get baptized. This made my day. I’m still
grinning from ear to ear. It just goes to show that you really don’t
know your impact on people until later in life or maybe not even until
after this life. Well guys this about sums up how I’m feeling and my
week. I love you all!!!

Brox Shimai

3 November 2014

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Hello family and friends. All is well. I have been enjoying my new
area very much. We just got back from the temple and now we are on
Yokohama doing the tourist thing for the day. We are actually at the
mall right now siting in massage chairs and emailing. This is the life
😉 this past week was a blast. The girls and I carved pumpkins
Halloween night just before bed and then for my birthday the next day
we splurged and went to lunch and with a member we went bowling. It
was so fun. This week has just been so much fun. Mom thank you for the
package. The dress fits perfectly. I have learned a lot from my new
companion. She is just the best.we have been teaching a lot which is
good for my Japanese to get better. We practice a lot with ward
members but we have taught a couple lessons to investigators too. We
have one investigator who’s mother in law is against her doing
anything with our church so she has done everything to sabbatoge. So
she has decided to hold off on taking any more lessons until her
mother in law dies ( her words not ours). We are trying to meet with
the mother in law but she doesn’t want to. So that’s were we are at
right now. If you can pray her and her mother in law. Her name is
Rena. Other then that not much else has been going on. I love you all!

Brox Shimai