Friday night before conference I actually started getting sick. Luckily I was still well enough to sing, but on Sunday my body finally hit a wall and it's been a long week because of this. The MTC is NOT the place to get sick! But, God is taking care of me, and I am getting better, so don't worry. :) Seems like a lot of people are getting sick actually. Apparently there was a break out of type A influenza. I didn't get that, luckily, but people have been getting quarantined because of it and we're not allowed to shake hands. Crazy.
Okay time for happy news. The new Japan missionaries all arrived this week!! Including a whole group of Nihonjin (native Japanese missionaries) we were so incredibly excited for them to come!! They got here Monday and we met them for the first time that night in our residence hall. There are TEN sisters! Amazing! They are the most adorable beautiful people and we all love them SO much. So on Tuesday night after the devotional there was a devotional review/testimony meeting with our districts and the new Nihonjin. At the beginning President Kruger asked all the Nihonjin to find one of us to sit by, so that we could TRANSLATE the English speaker's testimonies. 0.0 WOW. We all were on the edge of our seats very quickly and I'm sure there were a lot of prayers being shot through the ceiling at this point. Sister Nanjo came and sat by me, and now she is one of my favorite friends. At first I was a bit overwhelmed and shy to translate but her sweet smile and confidence helped me, and God kept saying in my head "Effective communication= OPEN YOUR MOUTH!" and so, I did, and the words came. It was a really special experience. A lot of the Nihonjin also got up and bore their testimonies and wow they are such special spirits. Although I didn't understand every word, I could feel them in my heart, and the Spirit warmed up the room like a Sauna. Sister Nanjo and I were both crying and a new light and understanding rested upon my shoulders as I realized that they are my people. They are why I am here. My soul felt like bursting and my desire to work harder filled my whole body. I wish I could pour out the spirit I felt there into this letter. I will get pictures with them soon. :)
The day after that, Wednesday, all the other new missionaries came that are going to Japan. Only TWO sisters came in with this group. One from Washington, and one from Australia. There is also an Elder from FINLAND. So intense. His English is awesome, but I still am blown away by the missionaries that have to learn a language THROUGH a different language then their first. It would be like me being taught Japanese through Russian. They are so brave and have so much faith!
During class this week our Sensei showed us a clip by Elder Bednar. In it he talks about recognizing and living by the impressions of the Spirit. His advice to those who worry about recognizing it was this....QUIT WORRYING ABOUT IT. He said that if we are trying our best to be a good boy or a good girl, than we will act on impressions even though, most of the time, WE WON'T RECOGNIZE THEM AS IMPRESSIONS until later on. I'd never thought of it that way before but it has helped me to relax a bit and just try my best to be good and trust that that Lord will lead me.
This week I've been thinking a lot about what kind of a missionary I really am. It is easy to be amazing when we first get here and are pumped for the work and full of fire and zeal, and when the experiences are still novel. But what I've found that really counts is the kind of missionaries we are when the days start to feel long and the mornings earlier and the work harder. When I am tired, sick, not learning as quickly as I want to, hindered by mortal qualities, ect...this is when I can see who I REALLLY am. It has been a very tough week, but full of miracles and tender mercies from Heavenly Father.
My time is up but oh I miss you and love you so much! Mommy people said my music made them tear up when I played a few weeks ago and it brought the spirit and that is what I pray for and I am so grateful for the opportunity to share my testimony through music!
Your missionary, Sister Wylie