Friday, September 27, 2013

I Live in a Barn

Transfers were crazy!!! I'm training a brand new missionary named Elder Goates from Salt Lake City proper in a city called sugar house. He's 18 and graduated High School this past summer. He's a stud. He was a wrestler and lacrosse player in HS and likes Jazz music. We get along incredibly well. He has such an open heart and mind and just wants to learn how to be the best missionary he can be. That's how I am too and he's teaching me way more than I'm teaching him :)

We live in a small but rural area. The area we cover is actually 2 and a half miles away from where we're living right now which is in a members barn :D I mentioned to Emily that the roosters are our alarm clock (not literally, I still set one just in case) and by the time we're eating breakfast the cows are mooing. Soon we'll have the opportunity of feeding the cows which i'm excited for! We also live with two other missionaries: Elder Kauhi and Elder Lavulavu. They're both from Hawaii and they're a lot of fun! Elder Kauhi has been serving for 9 months and Elder Lavulavu is waiting for his visa to Australia and has been on his mission for 2 months. This past transfer a missionary came in from the MTC who ended up being Elder Lavulavu's cousin which caught them both by surprise!! Neither one knew the other was in Tempe waiting for their visa so it was funny to see their reaction!

Right now we cover two wards, the Grove first and second wards. They're both REALLY good wards. The members are the most missionary focused of any of the wards I've served in. We have next to no work right now and me and Elder Goates are new to the area so we're having a blast getting to know the auxiliary presidents and meeting the people who live here. I love probably 10 minutes away from the area I covered the last two transfers but half our area is farm land. We cover about 5 square miles.

Elder Goates and I had a really good experience with prayer this week. We had set a goal for talking to 20 people on the street that day and by the time it was 8:00pm we had only talked to 9 people. I felt like we should say a prayer so I asked Elder Goates to offer it and ask for the ability to achieve our goal. After the prayer we started biking through a neighborhood looking for people to talk to. We biked the entire neighborhood and saw no one. A little bummed we biked out of the neighborhood and saw a family of 4 walking on the sidewalk. We went over and talked to them and ended up finding out they were a less active part member family our bishop had wanted us to visit at some point! We had a really good conversation and were able to invite them to church the following day. After that we saw another family walking into a developing neighborhood so we biked over and struck up a gospel conversation with them. Proceeding forward there was another family working out in their garage that we shared the gospel with (no interest but it always feels good to bear our testimonies). 

By this point we had already surpassed our goal and it was time to head back to our home in the barn. As we were biking a past a house the garage door started to open so I slowed to a stop to wait for the door to fully open. There was a woman in the garage and I struck up a conversation. She was working through recovering from having just delivered a baby girl and was really nice. She mentioned she was working as an MMA instructor at a dojo in Chandler and the people she worked for were mormons and were the nicest people she's ever met! She was very interested in hearing our message and we set up a time to come back this Monday (today!!! We're PUMPED!)

Life is so good. The gospel is true. Joseph Smith is the prophet God gave his authority to to usher in the last dispensation and spread the gospel to the whole world in preparation for the second coming of Christ.

Love Elder Janis

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