Monday, April 15, 2013

Serving in Los Banos


How are you? It has been a slow week for me as far as letters go (maybe they are in transition somewhere after transfers), so I apologize if this isn't as exciting or address any questions you may have written. 

Well I got to Los Banos this week. Low and behold no more driving for me (well at least this 6 weeks)! I'm junior companion and still training so Sister Van Wagoner (since she has a license) drives the little Chevy Malibu we have. Which on the one hand is kind of nice but I think it will be harder for me to learn the area as far as directions and getting around go as well. Also we don't ride bikes here ever. No more sweaty backpack lines!! That I'm greatful for, but maybe I might eventually miss the additional exercise... but I'm not counting on it haha. 

We stay in a members home here as well. She has a cat (Monkey). That cat has decided that my lap is the best place to be during all of our study time haha (4 hours each morning). At first I was a little annoyed to be covered in cat hair but at the same time it is cool because I just feel loved. I know that sounds corny but it is true. I had missed being around loving pets. 

This area is on FIRE! The people here are so pumped about missionary work. And we have some AMAZING investigators and recent converts. We just hit the ground running here. The sisters before us left us some awesome leads that have turned out beautifully. We showed up Wed. afternoon and had three appointments scheduled that day already. And this week we have filled out already with a ton more. It was a lot more difficult to have solid appointments in Porterville with everyone working in the orange fields. Plus everyone here is so willing and able to do team ups or go out teaching with us and be there for member present lessons. In Porterville we had like ZERO team ups and already here we've had several, so that is really nice. 

There are two wards we serve in (both English speaking). They are suprizingly small wards though. Not much bigger than the Porterville branch. Our ward mission leaders are FANTASTIC! They are so excited and energized, and want to help revitalize the wards. In one of the wards we do translation for any Spanish speakers. I am not so excited for that. haha Luckily my companion did it this week, and there was only one Spanish speaker (I guess average is about two people). Someday my turn will come though I am sure, I just pray that I will be ready. 

Another major difference about being in this area is how isolated it is. We are not anywhere near other missionaries really so I haven't seen any since Wed. That is so strange after being in Porterville where we saw other Elders everyday. We would team teach sometimes and had dinner everynight with the Elders in our branch. In the apartment complex where we lived at first also lived another set of elders, and we saw our district leaders pretty frequently like a few times a week. So that is different. 

Funny of the week? I stepped in Dog Poo and got attacked by a little ankle biter dog. It had puppies and went nuts when we went through the yard to get to the door to see a recent convert. No bites though so that is good. And I guess now I can say my shoes are broke in... wearing them out in the service of the Lord ;). I would have liked if it hadn't got all over the suede part of my shoes though, but oh well haha. 

All in all things are good here in Los Banos. Occassionally I get to use the Spanish and I'm still learning little by little how to be a missionary, how to better serve others, how to be a better friend, how to be a better follower, and how to be a better teacher. 

Thank you for all your love and support. 
Zechariah 13:9 (yeah I also learned that book existed in the Bible this week... hey I'm still learning haha... But it is a new favorite scripture).

Hermana Miller 

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