Friday, November 28, 2014

11-24-14 Elder Peterson - Almost Thanksgiving

Well, hello everyone! Life is good. Real good. It is almost Thanksgiving and I am getting really hungry. And I am excited to play some football too!
 
Well, this past week was pretty great. We were able to teach a lot of people and we were able to have some great experiences. One of the cool things that happened this past week was as a mission we were able to go to the White House and get a tour of it. It was pretty cool. Now I can say that I have been in the White House...I think that was the greatest thing that I got out of it. Hey at least I got something out of it though! 
Find your favorite missionary!!
Do you know those weeks that are so busy you just can't remember anything? Yeah that was this last week. I am really drawing a blank on what to write about....ok I just remembered something.
So this past Thursday we were able to go to the Anacostia District Meeting. It was a very spiritual experience. So for those of you who don't know what a District Meeting is, it is a training meeting for a District, which usuallly consists of about 3-5 companionships of missionaries. These meeting usaully have about 2 trainings that last about 10-15 minutes. Then the missionaries usually do some "roleplays" where they will take on the role of an investigator and practice teaching. I hope that all made sense but these meeting are a weekly thing and last about 2 hours. They are really awesome. So this particular meeting was really good because the trainings that were given were really inspiring. One of them was given by one of my former companions Elder Redmond! He is super awesome. He talked about the Laws and Ordinances of the Gospel and how we can teach them more effectively. The other training was on the topic of prayer and it was also very good. Overall I was just grateful for the spirit that was present at the meeting.

Well, I am really looking forward to this week. We are going to be able to go the Temple as a mission on Wednesday and I am in need of a great visit there! Then it is Thanksgiving. It has been deemed by President Cooke as a non proselyting day and so we will be spending most of our time at member's homes and making sure that they don't have any leftover food. :) I don't think I am going to survive Thanksgiving. I am going to go into a food coma and never awake from it. 
 
That's about it for this week though! I hope that everyone enjoys Thanksgiving and I hope that everyone reflects on all of the blessings that we have! See ya!
 
Love,
Elder Peterson

Cheesy Me!!
 

Monday, November 17, 2014

11/17/14 Elder Peterson - I'm Grateful to Be a Missionary

Wow, this week went by so fast! But guess what? We got 20 lessons for the first time!!! It was awesome. We finally did it! We topped it off by going to the Why I Believe fireside last night. It was a really cool experience. Dennis Pitta from the Baltimore Ravens spoke with his wife. They both did a wonderful job. It was amazing to hear both of their testimonies of the Gospel. They have very strong testimonies which was cool to realize. I can't imagine how hard it would be to be in the NFL and have to deal with all of the temptations that come from the atmosphere. I really look up to him for the Spirit he carries with him.

So, we had some amazing miracles and some amazing experiences this past week. Elder Kacher from the Seventy came to our mission for a Conference. He is an amazing man. He taught us so much. Something that he really touched on in his time here was the importance of having faith in the work. When we have faith we can do ANYTHING. That is what he wanted us to realize. When we have faith that we will be able to teach 20 lessons we will do it. When we have faith that we will find people to teach we will find them. When we have faith that we will be obedient we will be obedient. It is that simple, and Elder Lim and I have faith. We are moving mountains over here everyone.

It really was a cool experience to talk with Elder and Sister Kacher and hear their powerful testimonies of the Gospel and of missionary work. They really helped me to get a spiritual boost that will last for a long time. Elder Lim and I have set some goals to help us become better focused and better motivated to do the work. I am really excited for this week. 

Only 10 more days until Thanksgiving. Oh yeah baby! I am excited to stuff my face. I can already taste the Turkey and Mash Potaters. Oh sorry my southern drawl kicked in there a bit. Did I mention that I am in Southern Maryland?

Well, some of the miracles from this past week. Do you remember Bobby Joe and Gabby that I was telling you about from the Singles ward? Turns out that they accepted baptism!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am super excited!!!!!!!!!! I almost cried when I found that out. Like seriously. I don't know if anyone can picture me crying but it is true. I almost did. It was so awesome! They are some of the coolest people in the world. They are planning on getting baptized on January 11th.

This past week Elder Lim and I were able to go and teach Richard and Sherry W. The missionaries have been meeting with them down here for a few months. Richard has been in a rehabilitation center for about 3 months recovering from foot surgery and we have been meeting with them there since that time. Turns out that he got out of the center this past Saturday! He was excited to get home.  We are meeting with them tomorrow night.

So, one of the last things that I wanted to share was about the workout we did this morning. We ran a mile, did 100 pull-ups, 300 air squats, 200 push ups, and ran another mile. Guess who did it? This guy. I almost died. I didn't think that I could do it but I actually did. It was pretty awesome. My push ups were pretty lousy, but that's okay. 

Well, I am grateful to be a missionary. There are things that I have learned out here that I wouldn't have ever learned in my life unless I came out here. That is the power of the Gospel. 

I love you all! 
Elder Peterson

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

11/11/14 Night of Music and Inspiration Videos


Elder Peterson was able to sing at Night of Music and Inspiration on Sunday, November 9 at the Washington DC Visitors' Center. Here are some links to "see and hear" him. Isn't technology great??!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gROTIqxAF_o "Nearer My God to Thee" sung by a group of 9 missionaries.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4FdJnewOOeQ "Savior, Redeemer of My Soul" sung by Elder Peterson

11/10/14 Elder Peterson - Life is a Balancing Act...right?


Well, winter is almost upon me over here in Maryland. It is starting to get really cold. We were driving to our Zone Training Meeting on Friday morning and the windows had frosted over. So, I used the wiper fluid to try to clear it off. It worked like I expected...but then it froze over again. Yeah, it is a little cold out here. For all those I am writing who have lived in cold conditions and have experienced this before...I am a newbie okay? I thought it was kind of cool actually.

So, life has been pretty good this past week. Elder Lim and I were super busy with some planning for meetings and stuff. When we get busy like this it is very difficult to find time to work in our proselyting area. It can be frustrating at times but we are getting use to it.
Life is a balancing act right? I think if there is one thing that I have learned from being a missionary it is how to balance our time. Trust me, I am no professional at it, but I have gotten a lot better at it. You would be so proud Mom! :)

So a couple of miracles from this past week. We were able to go on exchanges this past week with a couple of Elders. Elder Gold came to White Plains 2 with me. We had a great time together. He has been out on his mission for just a little bit less then me. We had a great talk in the morning after I had a very powerful study in the Book of Mormon. We talked about how we are both feeling at times the feelings of "trunkiness." I have found that these feelings come quite naturally as a missionary is coming to the end of their mission. I know that I feel it at times. I have noticed that is isn't a feeling that stays with you if you don't let it. We talked about how we both need to work on suppressing these feeling when they come. They can really damage work ethic. It really was a neat experience being able to talk to him about it. I am grateful for the times on my mission so far that I have been able to have really awesome personal studies. Those studies tend to lead into really awesome companionship studies as well. 
 
Also that day we had a really awesome lesson with our investigator Richard W. His wife wasn't there at the time and so we just taught him. We had some cool members come with us too, which is always a great help. We were able to teach him all about prophets and how important they are. We invited him to pray about President Monson and he did! He said that he feels really good about it. It is exciting! He is making progress!

On Friday we had our Zone Training Meeting. It really was an inspired meeting. One of my former companions Elder Wendt, gave a really awesome training on how to find people to teach. It was really cool. He made a comparison of Hide and Seek and Finding people to teach. Can you all think of the comparison? I'll let you use your imaginations....

Well, anyways. this week is going to be so awesome! Elder Kacher of the Seventy is coming out to visit us. I cut my hair today just so I could look extra good for when he comes. It is going to be a spiritual and an amazing experience.

Well, I love you all! Have a great week!
Elder Peterson

Saturday, November 8, 2014

11/3/14 Elder Peterson - Happy November!!

Elder Lim, my new companion
Happy November everyone! I really can't believe that it is already November! I am now going to be able to enjoy the fall and winter down in the beauty of Southern Maryland. I have made my way back down to the south. I am serving in the White Plains 2nd Ward with my new companion Elder Lim. He is from Renton, Washington and he is a really hard working missionary. He is a really cool guy as well, one of the things he did before his mission was gymnastics. He is my first companion who is under 5'4" so that is pretty sweet. He was going to go to college as a gymnast but he came out on his mission instead. I think that he is a great example of doing what is right no matter what! He is a great friend already. 
 
So the White Plains 2nd ward is pretty legit. The people are really nice. It is so small though! Probably the smallest ward I have been in my whole mission. They are so welcoming and friendly that is what makes it a great place. The Bishop's name is Bishop Cottle and he is an institute teacher which is pretty awesome. I met him up in DC before I came down here. He works at the Barlow Center which is up in DC. I went there a lot while I was in the singles ward because it is where the BYU interns are housed. One of the interns was Logan Groscost and he worked with Hannah and Rebekah. He is cool. I miss the ward a lot, but I am really excited to be in this ward. We are working with a few people that seem promising. I have forgotten how friendly people really are. Being up in DC can be a struggle sometimes because people can be a little crazy and rude, but I got used to it quick. People down here are a lot more friendly. 
With Logan Groscost

So, I have a quick question for my family. Has there ever been an Elder that has served in the ward named a Elder Erikson? Or Erickson? He is from Maryland and used to be in one of the wards I have served in. If not it's all good I just thought I would ask.

For Halloween we had to return to our apartments at 5 o'clock and stay in for the night. I spent my Halloween planning and eating candy. Yay!! It was so fun. Actually I have a story about Halloween. So we had a meeting with President Cooke up in the mission home on Friday morning and we have to travel about 2 hours to get there. The meeting got out around 2 o'clock and as we were going home, President Cooke decided to have an emergency drill while we were traveling  home. We were about 45 minutes away from our ward building which is the place that we have to go to during an emergency drill. The funny thing was that we were about 2 minutes away from the Stake Center when we found out about the drill. It was great. President Cooke has had a huge emphasis on emergency preparedness the past few months because of the crazy stuff that had been going on in the world. It is a great principle to know much about so if there ever was an actual emergency we can be prepared. 

Thanks for the pics from Halloween family! Looks like you had fun. Hope you didn't eat too much candy. I heard that Seth had 20 pounds of it....that's a lot. Don't get fat Seth! 

So this morning we got up at 4:30 because we have one of our investigators Nkosi come and work out with us at the gym. He is such a cool guy. Elder Lim told me about the story of how they met Nkosi and his family. It is pretty neat. 4:30 came very early this morning. And this was the first time that I have been to the gym in 4 months. Yeah I was struggling. It was a pretty nice gym too. I am excited to be able to energize myself in the morning from getting a good work out. After we got done we went home and got ready to go up to the Visitor's center because I had to practice for the Night of Music and Inspiration. I am singing on Sunday Mom! It is coming around too. It will be good. It was a fun ride up there. It takes about an hour and a half to get up there. That is the life of a DC North missionary. And I love it so much!!

This morning I also read the conference talk "Joseph Smith" by Neil L. Anderson from this past conference. It is so wonderful to know that Joseph Smith truly saw God the Father and Jesus Christ. He was and is a prophet! And I am grateful for the sacrifice he went through in order to allow God's kingdom to be on earth again. 

Well, I hope that everyone has a wonderful week! Talk to you later.
 
Love,
Elder Peterson