Friday, August 30, 2013

Miyako Island

After traveling all day on Tuesday, (Wednesday for Japan) Jarom had to wake early and take a flight to Okinawa. From there, he had a 6 hour layover before flying to Miyako Island. It is the 2nd most southern island of Japan. Very tropical. Very humid.

Jarom said, "You know when you you are camping and you are just covered in sweat and sitting by a fire? then you try to lay down for sleep but you are sticky? but that is after a whole days activity? Well tha'ts how you feel after stepping out of the shower."

He will be serving with Elder Gandy. They share an apartment with another set of missionaries who are Japanese natives. We couldn't be more thrilled for this first area!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Flight delays, and Tender Mercies!

Jarom's mom here. A couple of months ago Jarom's dad booked a flight to Utah so he could visit our new grandbaby.
Lans and sweet little Iris
He had to juggle the flight around his YM responsibilities as well as our daughter's work schedule. It wasn't until after the flight was purchased that we realized he would be flying home the day before Jarom flew to Japan. Or so we thought.

The MTC had Jarom's original flight date as August 27th. When he got his traveling papers, we realized he would be at the airport on the same day as Lans. We were dismayed that they would be so close and yet they would not be able to see one another.

This morning I had my phone out at my desk at school waiting for a call from the Salt Lake airport. It never came. Again, I was dismayed but knew that Jarom would try to call me from Tokyo. At 2:45 pm I received a call from Salt Lake. It was Jarom! His flight had mechanical problems and they had to re-book their travel plans. He was stuck at the airport for 11 hours. Although it stunk that he was grounded for that long, he was able to enjoy some Cafe Rio. Also, his new departing flight was within 20 minutes from Lans'.

Jarom was hesitant to see Lans. After all, he is asked to sacrifice seeing his family for 24 months. He wanted to be obedient to this sacrifice. Imagine the surprise when Lans and Jarom were in the same terminal! Not only that, Jarom was at gate A3 while Lans was at gate A4.

Coincidence? Nope. Tender Mercy!!

Look at that badge!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Last days at the MTC


So I don't have much time or much to say. This is my last week in the MTC. But yeah in two days ill be in Japan!

I have two experiences to share. first off we skyped a nihonjin again. It was actually really hilarious because my doryo accidentally asked her to read 11 really long scriptures instead of 2 short ones. Sooooo she read them and it took like 5 minutes. We were just laughing the entire time.

Second was my teacher asked me to be his "tomodachi" in a lesson. So I had 3 japanese kids teach me and my teacher. It was so much fun and it made me realize how much I actually have learned.

Anyways tell my friends that they can't send dear elders anymore. Also, they cant mail me until I get to japan. My new address was in the packet with all the to do list that came with my call so if you find that you can attach that.

Sorry for the short email. I had so many emails to respond to today.

Lots of love!

Jameson Chourou

Jarom's mom here. While he was responding to emails I happened to be on my email as well. Jarom and I were able to have a disconnected but real time conversation. It was WONDERFUL! After 9 long weeks in the MTC, he is more than ready to get to Japan. We talked about pants and cookies. Most importantly, we talked about him calling home when he flies out on Monday. With any luck, I will get to talk to him when he is at the Salt Lake airport as well as during his three hour layover in Tokyo. He also asked, "what do you need from me? What can I help with?" SERIOUSLY?? Ahhhh!! Be still my heart!

I was also able to exchange an email with his companion, Rogor Chourou:

"Well Hello Mama Jameson! I just wanted to write you a little thank you note for being such and amazing mom to Elder Jameson. I have learned so much about him, and I love it. Your family is strong, and I can feel that. You are amazing! keep on keeping on, and just thank you for everything. The socks! I have received so many compliments and I will wear them for the ever and ever! my preparations days will never be the same thanks to you and Jameson Choro! The talks, the butterscotch cookies, and everything you sent Jameson choro has been wonderful. I have enjoyed spending this past 9 weeks with him, and I hope he has too. Have a wonderful rest of the day! "

I have indeed had a very wonderful rest of the day! 

Saturday, August 17, 2013

To obey is better than sacrifice

Sooooo This week has been terribly interesting. Many different progressions in relationships and my personal study.

First off I forgot to mention that last week we skyped a nihonjin in nihon! It was craz cray desu yo!

But not only that, on tueday we finally had a shitotachi come and talk to us during a tuesday devotional. Richard G. Scott! He talked about prayer.

I also got my travel plans yesterday. I'm almost there! only have 9 more days before I leave the MTC!!!!!

Speaking of nice things, thanks for the hot fries! 4 bags are already gone. and we eat them before bed (we got it on Tuesday so one a night) and every morning I seriously have had the most fiery digestive problems. But it is so worth it in the moment.

I see Andrew and Sam sometimes. I accidentally ran across Andrew's classroom so I know where he studies now.

The language is not coming but I feel more confident with it. We were able to use a concept lesson with one of our "investigators" and we got him to commit to baptism. yay!

Anyways I wanted to share something that I wrote in my study journal about obedience.

Wowers..... 1 samuel 15:22
"to obey is better than sacrifice"

Great scripture. Basically saying its better to just obey than to have a sacrifice of sins. And our sacrifice for our sins has already been made. So... next time, if you know you are about to commit a sin willingly.... think "is this worth the sorrow and pain that I might feel for years? Is this worth the blood and death of the Savior? Will God look on this act with the slightest degree?"

I know for a fact that is isn't. No sin is worth your eternal salvation. No sin is worth an eternity without the ones that you love. No sin is worth the death of Christ. But He loved us so much that He went ahead and made sure that we could have an eternal family and life. He died so that we wouldn't. In other words, He died a physical, most harmful, painful, difficult death, that made blood come out of every pore, that made Him ask Heavenly Father for another way out, just in case we rationalized and justified our temporal pleasures to the point of committing that worthless sin. Obedience is better than sacrifice. But because of our disobedience, we made Jesus, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, because of the sacrifice needed to offset the demands and laws of justice to pay for our disobedience.

But yup yup yup that's my input for this week. I hope it can bring some light to your lives. Speaking of which, I don't hear enough from my friends and family. Especially Brenna. Tell her every night to dear elder me until I leave. I want to know what she is doing. You guys need to do the same! Dylan needs to write me tooooooo!

Can you message Masako and tell her that I will write her when I get to nihon? That way I can tell her about all my adventures there.

Anywhoggie boggie,

I love you all and keep strong and find that light that makes your day bright. If we don't look for whats good, like birds (for some reason I have fallen in love with the birds at the MTC, I think they are so cute) You will be forever in the dark. That breaks our Heavenly Father's heart when we are sad and gloomy.

And on that note, as Richard G scott said as he walked away (he stopped and turned to everyone after the devotional) "Be good!"

Jameson choro

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Silly socks, BYU roommates, and holy places

Hello my dear mother and friends!!!!!!

I have seen Sam. (Sam Biggs was Jarom's roommate at BYU. He entered the MTC on Wednesday, the last of the 4 to serve this summer.) I saw him like 2 hours ago. He cut his chin with a razor because he is used to an electric one. I think it is stinking hilarious because he said he hated blades.
Sam, Michael, Jarom, and Andrew - BYU roommates with their mission flags.
Ummm I haven't seen Andrew (Andrew Dimmick is also Jarom's roommate & one of his bffs from Avon. He entered the MTC last Wednesday.) I never see him. I mean I only really see the Spanish and Japanese people. I have seen Ashlee a lot. (Ashlee Bahr, a friend from his ward at BYU is also in the MTC.)

Andrew & Jarom at the Nauvoo Temple

I have been thinking about what I could try to say this week and truth be told I have no idea what I need to say. I mean there are things I cant learn when I'm here in the MTC. But there are things that I am learning that I couldn't learn in the field. And for that, I'm eternally thankful for the opportunity to be here as long as I am. The MTC is one of the most holy places here on earth. So much spiritual growth and progression happen in a short few weeks. For example, who would think that I can understand the amount of Japanese I do now because of the MTC? I cant speak all that well but I think that is because I need to learn something more important. I'm still trying to figure out what that is. And maybe I won't figure it out until later in life. I know I will pick up the language when I go to Japan. But for now, that isn't my biggest concern. My biggest concern is turning my heart towards God. My doryo in comp study asked me what we could do to be able to be blessed or rather endowed with power from heaven. I said well we cant be blessed until we desire to be blessed. Nothing can come unless we desire. But then with that desire we align our lives with the will of God. Once we do that then Heavenly Father will see that we are willing to change. Then He will bless us.

So one thing that I found interesting this week... is you can tell who has seen the darker side of the world. There are about 5 of us in my district that have had this happen. There is just a certain feel about their testimonies and how they testify. You can sense the urgency in their voices when they talk about sharing the gospel. This is actually scary stuff. This is actually life or death. This is eternal damnation or eternal life. It is going to be a shock to those who have not seen how actually terrible this world is. But that is the great thing. Then they realize how important it is that people need the light of Christ. Then they realize the blessings this gospel has brought to their lives.

Roger Choro is going a great job leading the district. Roger Choro and I have grown really close these past few weeks. We were told to share some testimonies to our companions about how the gospel has blessed our lives. Roger Choro and I were crying because we know the pains of the world and how much this gospel blesses our lives.

Jameson Choro (sorry I ran out of time.)

(Jarom's Mom, here. I like to send silly socks to my daughter and her companions. I thought it would be fun to see what Jarom's roommates would do if I sent them silly socks. I bribed them actually. If they sent me a picture with all of them in their socks, I would reward them with hot fries. I am pleased to share with the world, Jarom and his roomies in silly socks!)

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The virtue of patience


So yes I did see Andrew on Wednesday and I also saw Eric. It was great to see them! よかった!

Here is what I learned this week. I thought I wasn't going to learn really anything this week because I was really tired. Since I was tired, I couldn't focus all that well. But on Friday I sat down and studied part of PMG in the section of Christ like attributes. This week I decided to study patience. But first let me tell you a story.

I have mentioned multiple times about how my district is always receiving compliments? Like our teachers said we were the city of Enoch compared to other districts. I know for a fact that went straight to some of their heads. Don't they realize how blessed we are to be in this district? I wrote in my journal last night, don't boast, But if you boast, boast in God and his power and mercy. Because if it wasn't for him, we would be nothing, this district would be awful. He wants something done with this district and it is because of Him that we were put together. (refer this to Alma 26)

Anyways some kid from another district said something about his district being awesome and then one of the peeps in my district said "oh yeah? well we are the city of Enoch." Thank goodness my doryo heard it. He stood up and said "oh no my head is so big I cant walk anymore" and then falls on the ground. Point made and taken. ;)

With regards to this story, patience is a virtue that is always needed. It is a virtue that is always forgotten. How many times do we talk about faith, hope, and charity? A ton! And yet somehow patience is forgotten. But in reality, patience is the back bone to enduring to the end. Without patience we anger quickly, sin more, and judge others. Again it is so frequently missed, you never remember seeing it in the scriptures. But a lot of scriptures that talk about faith is coupled with patience. Faith and patience. Diligence and patience. Pray for patience. I mean look at James 1:5. How many times as church members have we read that? A million I swear.

But how many times do we read James 1:3 & 4? (3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. 4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.) This talks about how the trying of your faith is trying your patience. Later in James 1, it talks more about patience. Wow! Who knew patience is so important? Well I do now. But here is the thing, we don't only have to be patient with things, and other people.... but we need to be patient with ourselves. The more we study, the more we come closer to Christ, the more we find our imperfections. The more you are morbidly disgusted with yourself. You start to loose patience with yourself because of your wrong doings. "why can't I be better? Why can't I get this right? I am just a failure. I cant do anything right." This is where patience is key.

But what is important to remember about with losing patience with yourself... is that you are also losing patience with the lord. He is directing your every movement. Take a step back and look at your life. Every moment you lived prepares you for the moment you are currently in, and the current moment you are in now is going to help a moment later in the future. How can we lose patience with ourselves now when we must realize that this struggle we are in now is preparing us for eternity? How can we reject the guiding love of our Heavenly Father? Why is my doryo so much better at Japanese than me and because of that he dominates the lessons? I don't know. Maybe it is for him to learn how to teach and for me to learn the language. Why do I sit in class and hear all about how a mission is so difficult? I know this process is extremely difficult. But yet again what great work is easy? The reason this missionary work is so difficult... why it is so hard to bring people to know their redeemer and savior... is because it was never easy for Him.

He did the hardest thing on earth out of pure love. Have I branded Him in my heart as much as how I have scarred his hands and feet? Do I work to help others come unto salvation as hard as He worked to take upon our sins? No. Saving people has never been easy and will never be easy. It is a complete change of person and of heart.

So it must needs be that we continue to press forward with patience because he who has patience will inherit the kingdom of god.

Anyways that's my little thought for today,

My last little thing I want to say to my friends and family... Never let yourself get down. You always have someone who cares about you and loves you. It may not seem like it. Families argue with each other or your friends dismiss you.... but there is always a Father in Heaven who loves you more than all the things He has. He loves us so much he scarified his most beloved son so we can return to live with Him. He is always there for us. All we have to do is reach out and grab hold of His hand. Pray always so we may not falter.

Love you lots.
Jameson choro