Wednesday, August 6, 2014

6 months down! Wow :)

Buenas Tardes!
This morning I was able to finish reading the Book of Mormon.. in spanish! We finished reading it as a mission in 60 days, so about 10 pages a day. It was a great experience for me. I learned so much from it. I love the stories of the prophets and righteous men and women, I get to look up to. It reminds me that I am not the only one fighting to do what is right, but so many people before me, gave their lives and truly fought for Christ. I love how it has so many stories of missionary work, to encourage me to keep going and help bring people to the truth and joy of the gospel. But what I learned the most is that Jesus is the Christ. He is my Redeemer and Savior. The Book of Mormon tells us all about Christ's gospel and sacrifice for us. He truly loves each and every one of us and wants the very best for us. It shows us the admirable attributes He has and that we need to work to gain these as well. The Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ! I know The Book of Mormon is the word of God and can bring absolute joy into any person's life, if they just follow the teachings. I am so grateful to have this book in my life and to know of the truthfulness of it.
We have an investigator, Diana, and her uncle was baptized about a month ago. She is 19 and has really loved learning and gaining a testimony. She has 2 kids and a boyfriend, Cesar. He was never interested in our lessons and one day he said to listen and watched the Restoration with us. Something that day changed in him. We then started to make goals with him to stop drinking and he has now gone almost a full week without alcohol! Our second lesson with him, we asked him to pray and he said a very simple but so powerful prayer and cried. We decided that we need to see this family every day, as our last lesson of the day. They said how much they love having us there bringing the spirit into their home. Cesar said it just feels different when we are around and he is so grateful for our teachings. It was truly a great experience to see that we are helping a young family come closer to Christ and change their lives!
I am so grateful to be a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day saints and help people find REAL joy in this life! Have a great week. Stay strong and press on!
Love always,
Hermana Peterson
pics.. these are little ducks! But they have tanks outside that they wash their dishes in and clothes and everything and this one family had fish and ducks swimming in the tank! I thought it was cool until I realized I just ate with them off of dishes that they cleaned with duck and fish poop. ewww.

Sunday, August 3, 2014


Good afternoon!

This was one tough week. I never really understood what makes a mission really hard until this week. We have had the hardest time finding people to teach and it has been really discouraging. We talk to about everyone, but people aren't really open to hear it. We were just getting frustrated by this point. But finally we had a lesson in an investigators house and it was really powerful. At this moment, I finally was smiling and remembered why I was here. I could see the joy the gospel brought into her life and that she was wanting to come closer to Christ and her Heavenly Father. At times, it can be hard to see the good in our hard times. But when I was able to see that I was actually helping someone, I finally saw the good in the bad.

 Being in a new area is difficult. I have to start all over and make relationships with all kinds of new people, try to learn all the streets, and peoples names. and that is hard! Especially when I am blessed with my dad's memory ;) But I guess it has only been one week! Our house is bright green and peach. We havent had light for 3 days either and one day we didnt have water. What a humbling experience right? But I am sure learning a whole lot! 

We had this amazing Super Family Home Evening in the church that we planned for the ward and investigators. We had 4 stations with different topics: The Book of Mormon, Baptism, Sabbath Day, and Temples. We had families teach each one and it went so well! The leaders here are amazing! I am actually in a ward now. It is cool to truly see that the church is the same everywhere. Which it should be! It is the church of Jesus Christ, not man. 

I hope you all enjoy your fun summer days and smile big for me! 

Con mucho amor,
Hermana Peterson 

Second area!

Hey all! 

So today was transfers and I am now in Cocoyoc, Cuautla!! It is probably 30 minutes from my last area.. haha But it is like a whole new world. I was really sad to leave Hermana Marx. We had to much fun together, but she is now training. My new companion is Hermana Cortez, who is from California. She already seems great! But it was really hard to leave Tepoztlan. I feel like that is my home. I absolutely love the people there. It crazy how close you can get to people in such a small time, and in a different language! 

oh so fun story... this week we were eating at a member's house and she gave us orange juice that she made, which tasted fantastic! We were eating this chicken dish that was a weeee bit spicy. So I was drinking the orange juice and I look at my companion and she gives me this like "no dont do it" face. I didnt understand and poured myself another glass. She then gives me the eye and wiggles her finger and points to her cup. I kind of laugh and take another sip. I thought she was making a big deal out of nothing and probably just saw the pulp. She realized I didnt get the point so she got her spoon and fished out this white thing and put it on her plate. I look at it and still think its pulp... until I see it start moving! I take a closer look and realize it is larva!!! At this point I was sick to my stomach. I drank 4 cups of the juice to get the spicy meal down! As Hna Marx gave a spiritual thought, I couldnt help but just stare at the bug moving on her plate, thinking I probably ate 10 of those! But Im happy to say it has been about a week and I feel fine, luckily:) So I learned to always trust companions, and dont question it!

My last Sunday in Tepoz we had 2 less actives came back to church. When we had our lesson with Itzel this week, she said how she took our challenge to read the book of mormon again and it has completely changed her. She says she has more energy and just feels happier. She was so excited to return to church since 6 months. She was all smiles in church! It was really fun to see her feel the joy of the gospel in her life again. We also had this other member come back and I saw his wife walk in without him and thought he wasnt coming again. My companion and I were upset and went to talk to her after sacrament. As I walked up to her, I saw her husband next to her and just screamed and jumped! I was so happy!! She said she thought I was going to hug him. But seeing someone come back to the truth and being changed is a great feeling! The best feeling:) This day I realized that I had complete and true love for the people there. My only desires were to help them come closer to Christ and help them know that God loves them. And through this I grew to love them myself. 

The mission is so amazing! I cant explain how fun and rewarding it is. I get to see people change and reach just a part of their potential! What a complete privilege! I hope you all have a great week and smile big:)

Con mucho amor,
Hermana Peterson 

fotos.. a sunrise outside my porch window in Tepoz and
my favorite family:) 

Sure and firm :)

Buenas tardes mis amigos!

We met this cute old man on the street and he said his wife would love to talk to us, so we followed him into his house and sat down with his wife. She was 87 and cute as can be! We just had one problem... she was practically deaf and read lips. Which probably wouldn't be a problem with any other Mexican, but for us, we talk different and she couldnt read our lips too well. We would practically scream at her and it was pretty interesting. At the end, I asked if we could close with a prayer. She didnt reply and my companion just told me to pray. So I did! But as I was about 20 seconds into the prayer she screams all excitedly and points to the pamphlet, and says, I can read these letters!! They are big! My companion and I just looked up from our prayer not sure what to do.. I just said awkwardly amen? and we just started laughing. The funny part is that that has happened 3 times with us! I guess old people must not want to pray with us.. 

One of our investigators, Saul, is very interested in the gospel and really wants to change his life for the better. He says that he has been praying for years to find out which church is the true church. He loves when we come to teach him and says we just bring him a great spirit and joy. We always tell him to continue to pray to know if Joseph Smith was a prophet. One day when we came, he said I have some bad news for you two. He went on to say that he has come to the conclusion that modern day prophets dont exist because the bible says so. I was pretty upset and thought well.. adios Saul at first. But we then just asked him why he thought that and listened to his feelings. Hermana Marx testified how she knew that prophets are still on the earth and then I just had scriptures flow through my mind and stories to share. It was a really cool experience for me. I just knew what to say. We handled the lesson with love and not a scripture battle. It was cool that he trusted us enough to listen and ponder what we were saying as well, he wasnt closed off, but said he would pray some more and we promised he would receive an answer. 

I use to always wonder how missionaries could go home from their mission and not want anything to do with the church. From this lesson with Saul, I learned why. We are constantly asked questions that test our faith. People pour out all their doubts and feelings and we have to be that rock to guide them in the right place. But if a missionary doesnt have that solid foundation and is wishy washy, they will easily fall. You have to KNOW for yourself and not let other people's doubts destroy your faith, but build it. From our lesson with him, I grew to realize how important prophets really are for myself. I know that this church is the only true church of God and I only know this from the joy and warm I have received from the Holy Ghost. I really recommend everyone to ask those "why" questions and answer them for yourself. Brother Gogarty once taught me, "if you stop asking, you stop growing." So ask and SEARCH for your answer. 

Have a fantastic week and enjoy your summer:) 

Con mucho amor,
Hermana Peterson 

picture.. sometimes we get completely lost and go for a hike through the forest.. wish I learned how to read maps before my mission! 

Learning Faith

This week was one big lesson on faith! Every two weeks we get 900 pesos, which is about $74. Luckily Mexico is cheap! My área is the furthest área in our zone, so every monday we have to travel an hour and a half to Cuernavaca for Distric Meetings. Which means we go there once a week. But this last week, we had interviews with our president as well. We didnt plan on having to go one extra time though. So as the week started we realized that we wouldnt have the means to make it to and back to Tepoztlán. We decided to pray together with faith to find a way to have enough money to do what we needed to get done. The next day as we were walking to an appointment, I saw 500 pesos on the ground and got so happy! But we tan examined it and realized it was a kid's toy and was worthless. We continue to pray for the means and didnt know how it would work out, but trusted it would. As we left our apartment in the morning the next day, I said, "We gotta look for money today, keep your eyes open!" Right after I said that I looked down and saw 50 pesos! I reached down to pick it up and realized it with only the corner of the bill. I then went searching for the rest of it, and did find one more corner. But it was too small and worthless. We found this hilarious at this point and just laughed. The next day we went to Cuernavaca, knowing we didnt have enough money to actually get back. So we went to the bank! We decided we would take out our own funds. As we were walking to the bank, Hermana Marx was crossing the road and behind a  car was 200 pesos! Exactly what we needed! We checked to make sure it was all there and real, and sure thing it was! We were so happy and grateful! I learned two lessons in this. The first, God will help us, but we have to do all we can first. He isnt just going to always give us what we want or tell us what to do. We have to make our own decisions and do what we can and he will make up the rest! We didnt get what we needed until we found a way to solve our own problem. This is like the Brother of Jared in the Book of Mormon. God wanted to help him, but he needed to use his agency and come up with his own solution first. The second lesson I learned is that God has a sense of humor. In the middle of our trial, he helped us see the bright side and kept us laughing and our spirits high. He is not a scary and mean God, he is loving and carinf, with a Little bit of a funny side too! In conclusión, we made it home and we gained faith in our Lord:)

Another lesson that I learned was from the most humble women I have ever met. Anna lives in a one room house with a tent inside, where she sleeps. She only has a bag of sugar and flour, a jar of jelly, and half a loaf of bread.  But as we were talking about our Heavenly Father with her, she said, "my house is simple, but it is full of love." That is when I realized that so many times we become greedy and want so many worthless things in this life. But the only thing that we can take back with us to God is our knowledge and our relationships, so that is what matters most. We need to remember that love and family is everything. We dont need very much to be happy. Anna is one happy women and she barely has anything, but she has a family and knows that God loves and cares about her. I know that I learned a great lesson from Anna and I hope to always remember what really matters in this life and fill my home with love. 

Right now it is 61 degrees and everyone here is wearing Winter coats and sweaters. It is funny to see people in coats that I wore in Rexburg in -20 degrees! But the weather is getting to my companion and I as well. We wore a cardigen once and even made hot chocolate another day! Weird, I never thought I would want to drink hot chocolate in Mexico! It is seriously the best time of the year with all the beautiful rain:) I hope you have a great week! Keep the faith and press on!

oh and I had 2 baptisms this week!

Les amo,
Hermana Peterson

Mold, bats, and babies!

Buenas Tardes! 

This week was an interesting week for sure. First my companion got sick in the beginning of the week, which means I got it as well by the end! How could I not? I am with her 24/7! So that made it a little rough to work, but we still went out there and did all we could! Also, we realized that we have mold growing in our house on about every wall. The land lady sent in men to just scrape it off and cover it back up with paint. Im pretty sure that doesnt kill mold! So if we just never wake up one day... you will know what it is from. Also, a bat got in our house one night! That was fun to see three girls just screaming and running around. haha But we did get him out! We also went to a baby shower for a girl in our ward, because she said she wanted us to meet her friends. I never thought I would go to a baby shower in Mexico! But I can check that off my list. It was pretty similair to the States. The games we played were a lot more confusing when you dont understand really what is happening, but that makes it more fun! We even played a game where we were blind folded and my companion fed me baby food... that's not weird right? But I had to make up for missing Emily and Bryndee's baby shower. 

We taught our first lesson in ENGLISH! Sabrina is 30 years old and from California with a little baby and married a Mexican. But teaching in english was surprisingly way hard and weird. I didnt think it would be, since that is my language, but we felt like we needed to speak more sophisticated since everyone actually understood everyone 100%. But it was a great experience. She said she had never heard of Jospeh Smith or his story before and really liked it and it only makes sense that we would have prophets still on the earth, because God still loves and directs us! So that was really cool to see her come to see the conclusion of that. Even though, we were like translating english to spanish to english in our heads, the lesson was still really strong and had a special spirit about it. 

This week I was able to see the progress of a few of our investigators. It is fun to see them come to the point where they realize how much they are changing and growing for the better. They start to see that what we are teaching is bettering their lives and they want to just share it with all their family. It is amazing how much just learning that Heavenly Father loves you and you HAVE a purpose in this life, can help people see life in different eyes. I know that the Gospel is truly for everyone and it can bring them closer to their Father and help them become who God wants them to be. 

¡Que tenga una hermosa semana!
Hermana Peterson