Thursday, August 6, 2015

Give me Liberty or Give me Death (because there is no in between)

From: Madeleine Cottle
Date: 2015-08-06 16:05
Subject: Give me Liberty or Give me Death (because there is no in between)

Hi Everyone! 

We leave the MTC on Monday at 7:00 a.m. The flight is 13.5 hours total. We stop in Portland for a little layover; I think we change planes there too. 

We had our last lesson with Mai (who is our morning Japanese teacher) on Wednesday. Wallace Shimai and I both cried. We taught Mai about the atonement and the resurrection. Then we thought that the "lamb" in the Japanese translation of the Doctrine and Covenants, was us, and Jesus was the shepard, however, it was really referring to the Lamb of God! Whoops. The verse meant that after death, Christ lives. However, we didn't really understand that so we were like, "yeah, we as humans live!" It was funny. In retrospect. 

On Tuesday, President Nelson came. He talked about writing Christ's name on our hearts. The second he walked into the room, everyone was silent and I am sure (I am 99.99999% positive) everyone felt the Spirit. He walked out after talking and waved, blew kisses, and bid us farewell with more waves. He is the sweetest, kindest man ever. 

On Sunday, Cheri Dew spoke to us. She talked about her experience writing songs and simply made me feel like, "Yeah! I can do this! It'll be easy!" (Actually, no it won't be easy, but I *will* be able to do it, and that is the important lesson that I need to etch into my brain when it gets hard.)

Wednesday morning, after cleaning windows, everyone leaving on Aug 10th from my branch got together with the branch president Lee Daniels for a 1.5 hour scripture study. He is so smart and we spent 1.15 hours on 10 verses. On Wednesday, at lunch, Wallace Shimai and I talked to an elderly couples mission teacher about her mission experience. She told us that North Dakota was awful until she learned to smile instead of scream. 

I cannot believe I am leaving! I can't believe I am going to wake up in Japan! Can't seem to get my mind around that!

However, I am super nervousexcited (new & useful word) and cannot wait to meet my mission president, my new companion, and everyone. For the first two days, we will be staying at the mission home for interviews, training, seminars etc. and I hope, sushi :) Our suitcases will go directly to our new apartments and for those couple of days, we will be living out of a carry-on bag. The adventure begins. 

Random side note: in geographic area, Tokyo South is the smallest Japan mission although it does not have the smallest number of missionaries. 

Thank you all so much for your love & care, for your letters, emails, and packages. I feel your love daily and I'm pretty sure your love is what keeps me going when my feet feel like they are giving out. 

I love you! Write me when you can! The mission address: 

Japan Tokyo South Mission
1-7-7 Kichijoji, Higashi-cho
Musashino-shi, Tokyo 180-0002