Monday, September 29, 2014


Another transfer has come and gone and my old companion has left the building, figuratively and literally! Sister Ruga was transferred to Balanga and I got a new companion. Her name is... cue the drum roll please... SISTER HESS!!! Finally, after being here for over a year, I am now a companion with a fellow puti!! (That is the equivalent of gringo... whitie... so on and so forth) We get along great! She goes home in the transfer after this and I go home the transfer after that. We are trying our best not to get trunky :) It's funny because here in the Peens everyone loves Americans. They always try to speak English to me and compliment me on my long, pointy nose. Now that there are two of us, everyone wants to talk to us! As in EVERYONE!! We are talking to more and more people everyday! 

I think this will be a good transfer. Sister Hess and I are both on the downward slope of our missions so we have a lot to share with and teach one another. You've never been on you mission too long to learn more teaching skills or improve your work. I am always striving to learn a little more, work a little harder, and do a little better on my mission. I can't wait to learn from Sister Hess!

We have already had some awesome experiences and I know there is so much more in store for the both of us as we work hard and remain sensitive to the Spirit. I love it when we are walking to an appointment and I just get a prompting to stop at a house. Usually we only get into one out of every 50 houses but, without fail, whenever we are prompted to stop, we get in and have an awesome lesson! I am so thankful for the guidance of the Holy Ghost in this work and in my life. 

I love being a missionary and don't ever want to think about leaving this work!

I love you all!
-Sister Miller

Monday, September 22, 2014

Missionary WORK!

This week has been great! We have been able to see our area begin to progress. We have been working as hard as ever and have seen how our hard work pays off. Another big tropical storm came through and it was KILLING Sister Ruga and me to have to stay inside. Eventually we decided to just go out and rough the storm. We had some really good, solid appointments and although soaked, we were happy. 

I've really seen how much hard work pays off here on the mission. It's called missionary WORK for a reason, because it's a lot of hard work. But I can say that when I have been working my hardest, I feel the happiest! I know that when we do our best then Heavenly Father is there for us to do the rest. But we need to show Him our drive and desire to serve Him. 

I am so happy to be here in the Philippines, tropical storms and all, serving our Father in Heaven. 

I love you all!
-Sister Miller

We got stalled when we came across this big guy walking to an appointment. When we got closer, he got a little mad so we waited for a solid 20 minutes for him to move. Look at the size of that tongue!! 

One big happy family!!!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Tropical Storms and General Authorities

This has been a fun and exciting week! First let me tell you about what happened last night. A big tropical storm came through. It started at about 2pm, which is coincidentally right when we start work on Sundays. So we go out in the pouring rain and harsh wind. We got soaked, to say the least, but the work goes on, right?!? As the day progressed, the storm got worse and worse. By the time we were walking to our last area, I felt like we were walking into a tornado...the wind was that strong!Just add a couple million gallons of rain falling from the sky and you'll have a nice mental picture of what we went through. Just another day in the Peens! The other sisters that we live with had already gone home due to the weather but Sister Ruga and I had a 7 o'clock dinner appointment that we weren't giving up for anything!! Most of our appointments had fallen through because of the storm and the power was out so the day consisted of us walking around trying to find people to teach. It wasn't very successful seeing as we were the only people out in the streets and the people in their homes couldn't hear us calling because all of the houses here have tin roofs and it gets pretty loud when you mix hard rain and tin roofs. Luckily, some people took pity on us and let us in their homes. By the time 7 o'clock rolled around we were tired, wet, cold (yep, even in the Peens!) and hungry. Filipino food never tasted so good! We had hot mami, a soup with crunchy noodles, veggies, and beef...yum!  Finally when we got back to the apartment the power was out and the other sisters were in bed. We still don't have power but luckily they do here in town so I can email today.

During one of the calmer moments in the storm!!
So that was a fun experience never to be forgotten. I also had an amazingly spiritual experience this week. On Monday night we got a text that President Dahle would be coming to our apartment the next day and to make sure we cleaned the place up. We didn't think much of if because they do apartment checks regularly. Then we were told we should met President at the church building because he wasn't sure exactly where our apartment was. Again we thought nothing of it. So we were waiting at the building when up rolls President and Sister Dahle with Elder Shayne M. Bowen and his wife. Elder Bowen is in the Philippines area presidency and the First Quorum of the Seventy. He came for a mission tour and to speak to all the missionaries at zone conference. I guess Elder Bowen chose San Marcelino to hold personal interviews and make sure the living conditions were okay. Elder Bowen is a general authority which means he is a regular converser with the prophet and I got the opportunity to have a one-on-one conversation with him! It was really cool to talk to him and ask him questions! We just talked about missionary life and I asked for any advice he could give me. His advice was simple, exact obedience. He talked more about it in our zone conference. He told us that it's the little, seemingly easy rules to follow that are most often broken because they are seen as unimportant. His examples were waking up and actually getting up at 6:30 every morning and planning for a full 30 minuets every night. Then he had us raise our hands if we had been exactly obedient to those two rules for the past 30 days. Out of the over 100 missionaries in attendance, only a few hands went up in the air. He then said he felt a 'lack of power'. It really hit me that we need all the help we can get as missionaries and although we may be following the big rules, we are sometime lax on the little ones.  This is true on the mission as well as in life. When we let ourselves slide on the little things, we won't be fully prepared for the trials that are to come in our lives.

I was so grateful for the opportunity to speak to and learn from Elder Bowen. I could truly recognize him as being called of God. I am so happy as a missionary in the Philippines! I love all the exciting moments that I am able to have here! 

I love you all and thank you for all of your support!

-Sister Miller

This is the last time that I saw my trainer, Sister Leakehe, before she goes home in November.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Do We Really Know What We Have?

I was reading a book about missionary work the other day and in the very back was the experience of two missionaries in Germany. It goes a little something like this... hit it! (That's a little 90's Aaron Carter throw back for ya! :))

Anyways, as these two missionaries were out knocking on doors and finding no success, they spotted a woman smiling at them. When they walked over towards her, she excitedly invited them into her home. Shocked, the missionaries asked if she knew who they were. The lady responded, "You want to talk about religion, don't you?" "Yes, we do", the missionaries replied.  "Oh, come in. I've been watching you walk around this neighborhood. I'm so excited to have you here. Please come into my study." The lady proceeded to sit the missionaries down and point out her three PhD's: one in Theology, the study of religion, one in Philosophy, the study of ideas, and one in European History specializing in Christianity. She continued by pointing to a row of large, thick books. She had written them all. She was a Theology professor at the University of Munich and had been studying religion for over 41 years. Talk about intimidating! I can only imagine what these missionaries must have felt at this very moment. I would probably have frozen up. These missionaries listened to the Spirit and brought up the Book of Mormon. "I don't know anything about the Book of Mormon." the lady said. "I know." the missionary replied. The missionaries introduced the Book of Mormon and twenty minutes later were out the door. I'm sure they were happy to be out of there and could never imagine what would take place just eight weeks later. 

In eight weeks, that lady had read all of the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, the Pearl of Great Price, all of Talmage's great writings, Evidence and Reconciliations by John A. Widsoe and 22 other volumes of church doctrine. Talk about a book worm! This woman, who had spent the majority of her life studying religion, related her life before she met the missionaries to Amos 8:11, "Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord." She said she had been in a famine for 76 years. She had been hungering for the truth and had been unable to find it. She then said something that hit me pretty hard, "I don't think you members know what you have." 

Do we realize that most of the world is in famine? Do we realize that they are starving for what we have? I know for a fact that the people of the world don't even realize what they are missing. Sometimes it frustrates me so much when people won't just read the Book of Mormon. They don't understand the importance of what they are holding in their hands. If the Book of Mormon is true then Joesph Smith is a true prophet of God. If Joseph Smith is a prophet then the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint is the only true church with God's authority here on Earth. It's as simple as that. 

Everyday I bear my testimony that I know the Book of Mormon is true, that Joseph Smith was a prophet, and that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is Christ's church reestablished here on Earth. I am so sure of this. All it takes to gain this testimony is to read. Read the Book of Mormon and ask Heavenly Father if it is true. I know, without a doubt that through faith and the Holy Ghost, the truth will be made manifest to you. 

I am so grateful that I am not experiencing  famine. I am so grateful for this Gospel and the Book of Mormon in my life. I know that it is true. 

I love you all so much!
-Sister Miller

Monday, September 1, 2014

Hard Work Works!

This week I have seen how hard work really pays off. We had been trying all week to find new investigators and although we were able to teach many new people, we had yet to find a family. It was Sunday night around 7:30. We were really close to the apartment and could have easily just gone home, seeing as we are suppose to be in at 8, but both Sister Ruga and I felt like we should just keep I2L-ing (Inviting to learn or basically knocking on doors and asking if you can share with them) even if we hadn't had much success the whole day. We I2L-ed almost the whole street where our apartment is. We didn't get into a single house. Now this is when that little voice in your head starts saying, "Hey, you've done enough. It's okay to go home now." We were tired. It was late. The next day was P-day. We could have easily stopped but here is where the lesson comes in. We didn't stop. We kept going. We got rejected door after door after door after door. But we didn't stop. 

That's when we got to the last house on the street. It was dark and we weren't sure if anyone was home. (Sidenote: In the Philippines most houses have gates around them so the concept of 'knocking on doors' doesn't really work. Instead you yell out 'tao po' and wait for a response. 'Tao po' roughly translates to 'people please') We yelled out 'tao po'. No response. We yelled out again. No response. We tried one final time. Still nothing. At least we tried, right? Then something inside of me just wouldn't let me walk away. I was just kind of standing there, waiting. At the time I had no idea why, but within a few seconds someone walked out of the house. It was a woman in her upper 30s. She quickly welcomed us in! We not only taught her, but also her whole family of 6! They said that they could already feel the Spirit as we taught and committed to baptism in September. That was indeed a miracle of the Lord. 

There's no doubt in my mind that anything is possible with God. I know that if He wanted, we could have gotten into each and every house that we went to but how easy would that be? This is the work of salvation. It's not easy. Jeffrey R. Holland once said. "Why would we think this work would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him?" I've probably already shared that quote with you because I love it. It's so true! I've learned here on my mission that as we give it our all to stand up for Christ, He will do His part and stand up for us. 

We did our part  and He blessed us with a family. I can't stop thinking about what would have happened if we just went home early. Maybe we would have eventually found this family, maybe not. I am so grateful that I was able to have this experience. I am so grateful that we were able to find and teach this family. I am inexplicably grateful for the Lord's hand in this work and especially in my life. 

I know that as we continue to be obedient we will continue to see miracles in this work. There is no disobedience that is worth jeopardizing that. 

I love you all so much!
-Sister Miller