2 Corinthians 4:5

For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Week 5--Stayin' Alive! (In the Gospel, that is!)

Hello my loved family!!!
This week has been amazing! But before I get into that, I'll answer some more questions, courtesy of my AMAZING mom!
1. Why did you not use you bike for moutain biking?
My bike is NOT a mountain bike. It would have been bad had I rode it on those trails. No bueno, I can tell you that. NO BUENO! But my bike is pretty AMAZING! Still haven't got to ride it yet, but I'll tell you this---I'm taking it apart and mailing it home at the end of my mission! I'm using that thing until it dies! Or until I die...which, when you consider me on a bike, could come first. (Just kidding Mom!)
2. Mrs. Baker and her class loved th LSU photos and want more if you get a chance?
I will send all the LSU pictures I can! Really, it shouldn't be hard...AT ALL. LSU football is it's own religion here. Even if they do get beat like they did this weekend.
3. Did you get your package and turkey card? I had too much fun picking it out. They don't make singing missionary cards sorry. Maybe that should be my new business.
I absolutely LOVED my turkey card!!! The office elders liked it too. Pretty much, IT ROCKS! I got a package from Aunt Belinda and the munchkins, and it was AMAZING!!! They'll be getting a big ole thank you letter in the mail!
4. Can you give Tina my phone number, I would love to talk to her?
I'll talk to Tina, and see what she would like. She might honestly be easier to reach with a letter, but I'll let you know.
5. What is you funny experience of the week and what is your best door approach? With Christmas coming you could trying singing carols to get them to open the door then sing your message?
Funny experience of the week, huh? Well, during district meeting, Elder Crawford was pretty funny. He tried to kick Elder Jones out of the room, and Elder Jones proceeded to pick him up and pretty much shove him in a trash can. Somehow, Elder Crawford managed to avoid the can, and so when he was back on his own two feet, he said, "That's right...this is Cowman Crawford's turf. Get off." We've been referring to him as Cowman Crawford ever since.
6. Do you get the ensign, friend, and new era or do you want us to send them? Is there amything else we can send like book of mormons with our picture and testimony in it? Stacia had a friend get called to my folks mission and my prinicpals son got sent to the Portland mission. Justin Bellitti from Lindon got sent to Brisband, Australia.
We do get the Ensign, so you don't have to worry about that. As for sending copies of the Book of Mormon with testimonies in them...Mom, I think that writing your testimony period for Tina would be AMAZING! I think she'd really like that. And if I think of anyone else, I'll let you know.
7. Do you want me to make those hats for anyone in your mission and any certain colors?
Hee hee hee...I'm tempted to say make a purple and gold one for Elder Jones...but he hates LSU, so don't really. Again, I'll have to think about it and let you know.
8. Do you get to attend the temple weekly or monthly on your pday since your near it?
We are allowed to go to the temple once a transfer, but we haven't had time yet. Sister Dansie wants to go before she leaves in 9 WEEKS, so we'll see.
9. Do you want me to send you old boombox and that little tape recorder so we can trade tapes?
I'd LOVE to trade tapes! I was actually just thinking about that the other day! That would be AMAZING! As for the boombox, don't bother. If I remember right, the CD player part doesn't work. But I'm not sure. If you want, you can try it out and if it does work, you send it.

All right, I don't have tons of time left, but I have to tell y'all about my amazing Sunday!!!
It all started off with me being humbled. I caught myself doing something that wouldn't have been a big deal if I was just Morgan. But the Lord then reminded me that it wasn't only my name I was wearing. It was His. That shook me up pretty good. I doubt I'll ever forget that feeling. What I'd been doing wasn't bad at all. But it wasn't what I was sent out here to do. I was sent to be a representative of Jesus Christ, and He reminded me firmly but lovingly that if I was not careful, something I did without thinking could destroy someone's chance of coming closer to Him. I felt very ashamed, and pleaded for forgiveness all throughout the rest of the meeting. It was then that the Lord showed Sister Dansie and I that He was truly in charge, and that all our hard work these last four weeks was not for naught.We'd met a lady at the post office a while back, and invited her to church. Well, she showed up---with her WHOLE FAMILY! Sister Dansie and I were shocked! We showed them around quickly, and then took them to the different classes. Afterward, we met up with them and talked to them a little, and they liked it! They had really enjoyed themselves, and they wanted to know more. So we said we'd call them this week, and they said great, and they even paid TITHING before they left! We explained that we didn't have a collection plate, but that we followed the law of tithing. Latasha (the mom and lady we met) really liked that, and she gave us the money and had us help her fill out a tithing slip, and that was that! So boy, were we excited. We weren't even expecting what came next.
Miracle #2 happened right after church. We got a phone call from Brother Joffrion, and he said that Tina was coming over to his house, and that she wanted to talk to us. I'll admit, I was worried. Our last meeting with Tina had gone really well, but I was afraid she was going to back out of her baptism. We got there, and were talking with her a little, asking her how school and work was going. She then said, "You know, I've been thinking a lot about my baptism." My heart sank. I did not expect the next words out of her mouth: "If I'm really going to do this, I can't keep putting it off because it'll never happen. So I was wondering if I could change my date to earlier in the week." My jaw pretty much hit the pavement. Luckily, Sister Dansie was on top of things, and she started setting things up and asking all these questions about when, and who she wanted to baptize her and stuff. By then, my brain caught up, and I jumped right in and told her how excited I was for her, and that I really admired her for making this hard decision. We went over the baptismal interview questions with her, and we couldn't keep these big grins off our faces! We got everything set up, so Valentina Skoric (I think that's how you spell her last name) will be baptized on Wednesday, November 12th! I GET TO SEE MY FIRST BAPTISM OF MY MISSION!!!!!!!!!!!!! The best part was that Sister Dansie and I had absolutely NOTHING to do with it. This was all Tina and God's doing. We were just there to tie up loose ends. It was so amazing, and as I ran back to the car to grab a pen for Sister Dansie, I pretty much was flipping out the entire time! There were a bunch of ward members at Brother Joffrion's house because they were finishing fixing his roof, and a bunch of them came over and told Tina how excited they were for her. She got to talk to Brother Ferguson, who is in the bishopric, and they kind of bonded because his family disowned him when he got baptized, so he could understand her worries and fears better than anyone else there could. Tina was still really excited when we left, and we were pretty much dancing all the way back to the car. "Seriously, how could this day get any better?" we asked ourselves. Well, God showed us.
The last miracle of this miraculous Sunday was the most powerful. We'd been invited over to a member's house for dinner, and since there would be non-members coming too, we could stay for longer than an hour. Sashika (our member) is AMAZING! She just got engaged, and she is the best example of a member missionary that I can think of. When we got there, her parents welcomed us in with open arms, and INCREDIBLE FOOD! They are originaly from Trinidad and Tobago, and we had this curry chicken that was SOOOOOOOO good, I about died. And we had peanut punch! Sashika's brother, Ricky, said that it was like liquefied Reese's Pieces. That made me nervous, because anyone who knows me really well knows that I can't stand peanut butter. But I made a promise to myself before I ever came on a mission that I would try everything once, and then if I didn't like it, I could make up an excuse not to eat it again. So, I tried it, and it was actually pretty good! I only had one glass, but hey, I kept my promise! That felt good.Right before dinner, Sashika and her fiance, Dustin, called everyone into the living room. They told us that this was their engagement party. That was surprise number one for Sister Dansie and I. Surprise number two came when Sashika said, "And the sister missionaries have a little message they're going to share with us." Sister Dansie leaned over to me and said, "Pedersen! You didn't tell me we were sharing a message!" I whispered back, "That's because I didn't know we were either!" We quickly composed ourselves, and asked Sashika what she wanted us to talk about. She said that everyone knew they were getting married in the temple, and she just wanted them to know a little bit about why that was so important.So, after dinner, we went back to the living room, and Sister Dansie started off by talking briefly about what we believe, emphasizing the importance of families. I then expounded on that a little more, and then we watched "Together Forever." Yes, that cheesy 80's movie the church put out. But it turned out really well. Everyone watched, and at the end, Sister Dansie bore her testimony about the gospel and how it blesses families. I bore my testimony about the same thing, I think. The Spirit was so strong! It was so quiet and peaceful, I loved it! And again, it had nothing to do with Sister Dansie or me. Neither of us can really remember what we said. It was all the Lord, using our mouths as His. It was the perfect end to an incredible day, and as we knelt in companion prayer that night, we felt very grateful and very humble that the Lord had let us participate in those miraculous events. Truly, this was a Sunday like I've never experienced before, and that I will never forget.

Wow! I'm out of time, AGAIN? Argh! Okay. Well, I love you all!

Sister P.

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