This week I got transferred! I really loved my last area, San Marcelino, but I am excited for the new change. I am now assigned to Pilar, Bataan. I am serving right next to my old area of Orion, Bataan. It's funny because when I was assigned in Orion, I was an STL (Sister Training Leader) and would sometimes have exchanges here in Pilar. Now when we go to the home of recent converts or members, sometimes we remember each other. They will say, "Have you been here before?" or "Hey, I remember you!" I like it because I already have a connection with so many people here and am semi-familiar with the area, which is a good thing because my companion is brand new!
I'm training again! Her name is Sister Cagata and she is from Bohol, Philippines. She is a native Cebuano speaker so she's still learning Tagalog. I'm really happy to be training again. There's just a different spirit around new missionaries. the excitement and enthusiasm for the work is so strong. I loved training my first "child" here on the mission but back then I had just barely finished my own training. I feel like now I have more experience and am really thankful to be able to share all that Heavenly Father has blessed me with and all that I have learned with Sister Cagata. It's kind of like paying forward everything I've gained on the mission.
|Hello, Sister Cagata!|
|Farewell, Sister Hess!|
This transfer day made me realize that Heavenly Father knows what we need better than we do. A few weeks ago, a new sister came into the mission off of the normal transfer schedule. When I found out she was coming, I really wanted to train her. I don't even know why. It's just something that would be fun and a good way to end my mission. I started praying that I would get to train her. While praying, I realized that if I wanted to be a good trainer, I would have to change some things, I started being more diligent in my studies. I started to strive to be more worthy and sensitive to the Spirit. I started to be more exactly obedient to all the mission rules. Now, of course, no one is perfect, but as I tried to be more aware of the things Heavenly Father wanted me to do or change, I found myself happier and better able to endure with patience the hardships or challenges that come in missionary work. I began to feel myself progressing again and my testimony growing everyday. It made me realize that its really the little things we do that decide the direction of our lives or our mission.
So the day finally rolled around that the new sister would be arriving. My stomach turned to mush every time the phone rang. I kept thinking, "Is this it? Am I going to train?" I had faith that Heavenly Father would answer my prayer, but I was still nervous. To make a long story short (too late!), I wasn't assigned as her trainer. At first, my heart was broken. I started wondering why, after all of my hard work, would Heavenly Father not answer my prayer? Why, after receiving what I thought was a confirmation that this was His will for me, would things not work out?
Now from this point of the story, I could have done one of two things. I could have sunk down into self-pity or I could look back and realize the blessings I have received from this experience and be thankful. Much to the credit of the Holy Ghost, I chose the latter. I realized that even thought the end result wasn't what I expected, the journey was a great one filled with spiritual growth and blessings. So I kept working. I kept striving to be a better missionary.
When the regularly scheduled transfer day rolled around and we found out our new assignments, I couldn't help but smile. "Sister Miller - Pilar 2 - Trainer" I remember turning to Sister Hess and saying, "God works in mysterious ways!" I realize now that I was meant to be Sister Cagata's trainer. I am so grateful for this and all of my experiences on the mission that have helped me grow closer to my Father in Heaven.
I know that we can trust in Him no matter what the circumstances. I know He answers prayers. I know He does so in His own way and in His own time. I am so grateful for that. Sure, it would be nice to get everything we pray for right when pray for it, but that may not truly be the what's best for us.
I know that God lives. He is our Father in Heaven. I know that Jesus Christ is His Son and only through Him can we be saved. I know that Joseph Smith was a true prophet called of God through whom we have again on the earth the whole gospel of Jesus Christ. I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God and our guide to obtaining eternal life. I am immensely grateful for this knowledge I have in my life and the opportunity to share it with my fellow children of God.
I love you all so much,
|Here is a final picture of the housemates before transfers.|
|Sister Hess and I bought sling shots one day and did some target shooting while walking to our appointments.|