September 26, 2016

Fairhope, Alabama

Man this week has been crazy, yall!
I am now in the Daphne Ward in Alabama, serving in the Fairhope area. It's great. Alabama has a different feel to it, and I love it! My new companion is Sister Fletcher. She just got done being trained, but you can't even tell! She is so on top of everything. It is quite humbling to be her companion. We share the ward here with a set of elders, who also happen to be our zone leaders. They are so fun! I missed serving around other missionaries. There's something to the comradery in the work that I love.

Our area though, is awesome! We are both super dedicated to finding new and prepared people this transfer. Sister Fletcher is a street contacting warrior too, so I am learning a lot from her on that one.
Our investigators are really cool though! We picked up a 16 and 11 year old this week and the 16 year old came to church! She loved it. We see so much potential in her. I just love this area so much already. That has been a great comfort amidst all the change we have experienced. 
On Saturday, we went to Mobile to the women's conference broadcast. It was so good. I loved President Uchtdorf's talk. I had already been studying a lot about faith and hope, so it really helped to hear his talk. I often make the mistake of measuring my faith on the agency of others. As a missionary, we often think if we do everything right and have enough faith, people will change. That isn't so, though. Everyone has their agency, and even if we do all we can, at the end of the day, they get to choose. Our key indicators ultimately reflect just the agency of those we teach. A successful missionary is one who invites. That is our purpose anyways. 
I love you all and am so grateful for your thoughts and prayers. I feel them and they make a huge difference in my day to day efforts. 
-Sister Peterson
Morning Beach walk in Fort Walton
 Me at the beach :)
 Sister Cook, Hilton, and I
I got to climb a tall ladder :)
 Sweet Home Alabama!!!
 Beautiful road in Fairhope
Cotton Gin!! Cotton is in season right now!

My Address!

Sorry, I totally forgot to give yall my new address:
320 Volanta Ave. B-4
Fairhope, AL 36532
Happy Monday!
-Sister Peterson


September 19, 2016

A Week that Cannot Be Titled

I don't even know where to begin on this week. It was definitely the hardest week of my mission so far. It was also pretty weird...

Well, Tuesday I got to road trip across the mission for an appointment for my companion. That was nice! I missed driving through the trees and seeing all the scenery! When we got back that night, we had to suddenly miss our mission coordination meeting, because the Destin Elders needed our help at a Family History class. I was pretty grateful because I got to drive across the beautiful bridge and I got to do family history! It is so fun helping people find their family! We got a new investigator from this activity actually and we were able to connect her family to a ton of people on Thursday
Wednesday was pretty ho hum. We had fun playing basketball with some non-members after our FH class though! We definitely earned some respect from them through my comp's sweet skills! Friday is where things got a little crazy.
We had a lesson with Sue, our recent convert that morning and then went to lunch with her and her non-member husband. He's pretty funny. She mentioned this women's talk that she was going to in Destin and invited us to come though! We actually got permission!!! So, we spent almost the whole day with her! We didn't realize that there would be basically this religous concert beforehand though. It was done by this church's worship team, but to us it felt like a rock concert. At that moment, I realized how awkward I have truly become as a missionary. The talk after all the weird other stuff was actually really good though!!! I needed a lot of what this woman said. I imagine my companion did as well. 
Sadly, that night things got really heated in our apartment though. This transfer has just been really hard due to a ton of things going on for both of us. It ended up that on Saturday morning, President Smith told us that we were both leaving the area. I got taken to Fort Walton for the remainder of the transfer. Yesterday we got calls and I will now be serving in Fairhope, AL. I hold no bitter thoughts towards anything that has happened this last month. I know that it was all with purpose and my companion is really getting the help she needs. I am so grateful that I could serve her during that time. I learned so much in that period. Now I am going to be with a missionary who just got done being trained. Hopefully I don't untrain her!!! I am pretty excited to go to this area. I was actually there for a night this time last year to take a sister to the airport. Things are looking up yall!
I just want to testify that the atonement is real. A few months ago, my studies were focused on consecration and what it really was. This transfer, I feel like I actually gave all that I had. That is the purpose of consecration. We give all that we have to the Lord; hold nothing back. I did and He strengthened me. The outcome was not what I hoped for or expected, but I know it was His will and not my own. Trust in your Savior. Give Him all that you are and have to offer. He will bless you more than you will ever know. 
-Sister Peterson


September 12, 2016

Change is Our Purpose

I feel like this week was really devoted to my learning. I have studied and prayed a lot this week due to unusual circumstances. We also had a very long zone conference. The zone conference helped me come up with a lot of ways to help further the work here in Niceville. I have noticed that each area I start in has a small teaching pool and fairly low numbers, but right before I leave, it has been built up to something much greater. I hope that I can keep that standard as we are counseled in Preach My Gospel to "leave an area better than" I found it.

I learned something very special about the atonement this week that I wanted to share with you all. I have been needing to help my companion with trials in her life, but I have felt so incapable of doing so, due to the struggles that I face. In one of my many prayers this week, I told Heavenly Father how badly I needed the strength of His Son, and how unworthy I was of His help. It was amazing how He helped me to help her. I didn't recognize it until I started counseling my companion. I just had so much peace and clarity. God does answer prayers my friends. He answers all of them. It is in His time and according to His will, but He does it!!!
In other news, we now have two baptismal dates set. We have high hopes for this area! I am just so excited to work with the members and build up the kingdom here. For those of you from the Washington Everett Mission, I am actually trying to work with our ward now to start our own "Come See For Yourself" event. The ward council loved the idea when we brought it up on Sunday, so the ball is already rolling!! I am so excited. This has been a dream of mine for my whole mission. Now it's becoming a reality. I will keep yall posted! 
Please enjoy these pictures. They are more fun than anything I could write. I love yall!!!!
-Sister Peterson
Sis. E's Bday cake #1
Mormon Approved 21st Bday
Cake #2
More Mormon Approved 21st Bday. Members Idea, not mine!!!
Cake #3 (There was a fourth and a fifth, I just don't have a pic)
A view of Destin 20 stories up
What we do during Family History...


September 5, 2016

Florida Summer Accomplished...Sort of

Well, I survived July and August. It really wasn't that bad! The heat is still here though. At the end of this month, it should get better.

This week was really random and uneventful, so I don't have too much to say. We did however pick up a new investigator. This part member family moved into our ward from Destin. The husband is a non-member who has been learning about the church for a while. We had an awesome restoration lesson with them and they all accepted the commitment to read 3 Nephi 11 and ask God if that event truly happened. Specific questions truly do yield specific answers.
Sister Etcitty also turned 21 this weekend, so we have been celebrating since Thursday. We currently have three cakes in our fridgerator... I don't know what to do with them...Hopefully the elders will accept some cake.
This week I have been incredibly humbled and I have learned a lot about charity. I am really focused on following the Savior right now. I have come to realize that as I study and teach like He does, I am much more successful as a missionary.
That's really all I have for you this week. I hope our pictures say more than I did! just kidding, the computer I am using is confusing... oops.
-Sister Peterson