Monday, February 10, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Hey hey!!!

Happy Valentine's Day on Friday!!! Hope everyone enjoys it and has a great day :) 
Mom and Dad, you better have plans to go out! The kids can definitely stay home. haha 
Love you all! 
I thought this card was pretty funny...and kinda describes our family together! Just crazy, laughing, and always having fun. :) 

This week was crazy, but so exciting too! We are serving up in the north side of the mission now, and it's great. The ward is huge, and I am getting to know people little by little. It's going to take forever I think...haha but hopefully with God's help I can get to know them all. It's always a fun opportunity to meet new people and find ways to help them too! 

Tuesday night we got to spend some time with the bishop here. It happened to work out perfectly. He is fantastic and is going to be a great help in the missionary work here in the ward. 

One of the less actives that we teach called us Tuesday night worried because her husband was in a really bad car crash. He had shattered his leg and was in critical condition. We couldn't get down there Tuesday night, but we kept in contact. He ended up being put in a hospital in Aurora, and the sisters down there went to see him. We met the wife at home Wednesday night with a couple in the ward. The brother was going to give her a blessing. It was a miracle! We had an amazing lesson about the power of the spirit in our lives and the blessings that this gospel brings to us. Then, the brother gave her a blessing of comfort. She told us that earlier that afternoon, her husband had come out of surgery. The first thing that he said was that he wanted to have her for eternity. He was so scared that he would have lost his own life, and that he hadn't done the things here that he needed to in order to have his family for eternity. They want to work now to prepare to enter the temple. God sometimes really does need to hurt us sometimes in order to help us. (Watch the video at the bottom- The Will of God) We need to work together to find our true potential here. And God knows best how to help. 

Friday night, we went to visit a less active. He taught me a lot about the power of the atonement in my own life. He is struggling right now to begin his repentance process so that he can become clean of his past life. He is struggling to begin. He knows why. He understands how it will help, but he doesn't have the courage to begin. It's amazing to think how the spirit really does speak to us as we are trying to help His child. Whenever I think about someone not repenting, the thought always comes to mind, why? We are the sons and daughters of God, and He wants to help us. We always deserve the atonement of Jesus Christ in our lives. 

As I was sitting in church yesterday, I was thinking a lot about the power of the atonement. It is incredible. It allows us to change and to become new people. As I was thinking about the people that have changed on my mission, I sometimes forget about myself. I am the one changing and becoming better. 

Yesterday was my companion's birthday. I attacked her with balloons and a sign I had made for her the night before. It was super funny! So, being a birthday, I got up and made her french toast and cut up a bunch of fruit with some yogurt and mango water. She loved it! haha I guess others like our family traditions too. :) She ate in bed and I came and sat on the other side. haha Good times! I miss all the family breakfast-in-beds! It's an excuse to make a fun breakfast and then eat in bed...what else could anyone ask for?? haha Our bishop brought a chocolate cake to church and the district enjoyed it after the meetings were over. Sister Abeyta put in an apple for me so I could enjoy the party too :) 

Things are going by so quickly!! The days seem to take forever, but the weeks go by in a blur. I can't even remember what has happened once I sit down to write. I guess life is going by much quicker. Just shows how important it is to enjoy every moment of it! 

Just wanted to say how much I love all of you. You really do mean so much to me and have changed my life so much. Hope you have an absolutely amazing week and are strengthened by the atonement in your life!  :) 
Love you all!!!!

Hermana Jessica Peterson

Just some thoughts on the atonement: 

Take life a day at a time. We need to live each moment at the time we are living. 
When we sin it does something to us. We become farther away from God. When we repent, it changes us. We become different people because of the atonement that has affected us. 

Elder D Todd Christofferson-The will of God
We must be willing to accept and even seek corrections. 
The little current bush was cut back, and he was sad. "How could you do this to me? I was making such wonderful growth, and now you have cut me down. I thought you were the gardener here."
"Look, I am the gardener here."
"How could you do this to me?" 
"I am the gardener here. I know what I want you to do. I want you to be a current bush." 
After blooming and producing fruit, the current bush again said, "Thank you gardener for cutting me down so that I could grow. Thank you for loving me enough to hurt me."

As the soldier doesn't receive his promotion, he says to God, "I've done everything I could to measure up. How could you do this to me?"
And he remembers those words, "I am the gardener here. I know what I want you to do."
As we understand the will of God, the bitterness leaves, and we ask for forgiveness. 
"Thank you mister gardener for cutting me down. For loving me enough to hurt me." 
We can all reach God's expectations. We can pray for his love-inspired correction. We can become the people he wants and expects us to become. We can be His children. 

As I was watching this short clip, the thought came to mind of how I act like this way too often. I expect some great reward for all my hard work, but instead I feel like it has all gone to waste. It hasn't. Our work allows us to become better and find our true potential. We may feel like God is punishing us at times, but really he is finding ways to make us even stronger and better. We really do need to be cut down at times in order to grow. We should be telling God, "Thank you God for loving me enough to hurt me.

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