This past week has been another good one. One thing I must say is that the area I serve in is HUGE! I feel we drive a ton, but we stay productive. We average about 40 miles/day in the car. Luckily the Toyota gets good gas mileage. This area is the largest area in the mission. A large part of it is the Yorba Linda hills. At the beginning of the week, as an organization freak, from the ward list, we made a separate list of all the members who live in our area. I then studied the area book thoroughly. I also requested a GPS from the car coordinator; Elder Butterfield because we all are new to the area. Elder Garza was here last transfer, but did not drive so he did not pay attention to the directions. With the list of members that live in our area, address to our only investigator, Hermano Mayans and a GPS, we got to work. We have only around six families that live in our area and tried to visit them all, but not all were home. We managed to get a lot of finding done this week and picked up nine new investigators.
Now, for the highlight of the week: Hermano Mayans. He is an 80 year old multi-millionaire Cuban that is the only non-member in his family. Missionaries have been teaching him for years. He has never accepted Baptism. All that I am about to share with you happened over the past week, remember that. Wednesday(Lesson 1)- We taught about the importance of prayer, scripture study and coming to church. We explained that his desire to follow the example of Jesus Christ will come from doing these three things. With the circumstances, I felt inspired to share a well known scripture [Alma 34:32-34]. This man has been taught for YEARS! We spoke about Baptism after reading the scripture and he then told us he wants to be Baptized, but mentioned he wants to wait for his grandson that is serving a mission right now in Romania to return home in 18 months from the mission so that he can Baptize him. Thursday(Lesson 2)- We felt inspired to speak on eternal marriage and temples and explain to him the higher goal in life with the help of the Bishop. We told Hermano Mayans of a greater goal even though his was thoughtful. We said that he should not wait for Baptism, so that by the time his grandson returns home from his mission in over a year, the entire family can go to the temple and be sealed for eternity. The broadened understanding delighted Hermano Mayans and he accepted the commitment. In the same lesson near the end, we decided to bring up the only problem he has had his whole life in regards to the church; which is coffee. Hermana Mayans mentioned that he has not gone without at least a cup of coffee a day for over 50 years. We explained that Baptism and eternal marriage in the Temple can only be done if he gives up the coffee. After strong testimony given by us and Bishop Disner, directed by the Holy Ghost, we asked to take all the coffee he currently had in his house with us when we left the lesson to help him never drink it again from that day on. Hermano Mayans was influenced by the Holy Ghost, because after over 50 years of drinking coffee daily, he requested that his wife, Hermana Mayans to go and get all the coffee had and to give it to us without question. He promised both us and Bishop Disner to never drink coffee again. Friday(Lesson 3)- We decided to watch, "The story of John Tanner" with him. The short, sincere and powerful video made Hermano Mayans tear up. This video was a confirmation to him personally that the changes he is making are right. I believe the church video of John Tanner really relates to him as he recently survived a stroke on the right side of his body. Sunday- Hermano Mayans came to church for the second time in his entire life and just loved it. He also did not forget to tell us that since Thursday, he has not had coffee whatsoever. This wonderful man has come a long ways this past week. After many years and after much effort of several missionaries, Hermano Mayans is preparing to be Baptized. The family wants to wait for thanksgiving weekend for the Baptism, because that is when the whole family will be in town. This Baptism will be at the beginning of next transfer on, and it will be a good one.
We are looking forward to teaching the new investigators we found this past week this week. The Lord continues to keep His servants, the missionaries busy in His harvesting vineyard. I love Missionary Work. I am grateful for all the blessings and miracles the Lord has blessed me with so far here on my mission. I honestly could not ask for more. I am doing well here in California and I continue to pray for the family, wherever you may be. I love my Savior, Jesus Christ. He has honestly become a close friend in my heart. I feel the love of my Heavenly Father very often to say the least and I could not do this work without His help.
Have a wonderful week everyone!