Conference this week was fantastic! I love conference! My favorite talk was Elder Hollands, he is also probably my favorite speaker. He told a story about two brothers who decided to climb a canyon on their own with no climbing gear. They neared the top and found a ledge that they could not climb, and at that point they could not go back down. The older brother hoisted the younger over the ledge to safety, but after he did there was no way up for him. He decided that his only hope was to leap for the ledge and hope he caught it. He told his brother to go find a branch large enough to hold him, and when he figured his brother was far enough off that he wouldn't witness him falling to his death if he missed the jump he said a prayer and jumped. He surprisingly made it to the ledge and got his hands over it, but quickly discovered that there was nothing to hold on to. Just as he started to slide back down to certain death, he felt two hands tightly grasp his. His younger brother had anticipated his brothers foolish plan and waited so that he would be there to help him. I liked how in the story he told the Brother was right there to catch him, even though he didn't think he would be. I think that's a great way to look at our relationship with Christ. He will always be there, right when we need him. We may not think that he'll be there, but he will. We just need to turn to him and ask him for help. I also liked how in the story, if the brother hadn't been there to catch him, he would have certainly fallen to his death. It's a perfect demonstration of how much we really need Christ. The only thing I can't understand is that even though we are all in this situation, some of us will reject Christ and will pull away from him. If we need him in our lives so badly, why would we do that? Why do we think that we can do it on our own? We're all guilty of it.
We also had our transfer calls this week, Elder Johns will be transferred out of Maryville and I'll be getting a new companion. I'll have more about that next week.
Elder Jared Petersen
(For more information about Conference visit lds.org and search General Conference)
April 13, 2015 Letter
We had transfers this week, and I got Elder D Smith! We were companions in the MTC so it's exciting that we get to serve together now. He told me that he can tell I've picked up some southern accent haha. Elder Johns asked me before transfers where I thought he would go and on a whim I told him Watauga ward. And now that's where he is!
I've had a pretty good week, before transfers me and Elder Johns just went to people who he wanted to say bye to, so it was sorta uneventful, but good. Me and Elder Smith have had some good times already. The other day we found a guy who was atheist/agnostic and we talked to him for quite a while. He had a hard time with the concept of faith, because he felt faith was just an absence of reason. We explained a bit about faith to him, part of what we explained was that we simply can't comprehend everything as we are now, so that's where faith comes in. It's like if you go to the doctor and he tells you what's wrong with you and that you need surgery and you let him preform the surgery. You don't have a perfect understanding of what's wrong, if he's right, or if he can fix the problem, but you'll still let him perform the operation. Usually you'll also have him explain what's wrong, how he's going to fix it and any other details that you need to know in order to make your decision to let him do the surgery. That's like learning about the gospel. When you're listening to what the doctor says you're deciding whether or not you believe him and it's no different when you learn about the gospel. When you learn about the gospel and feel the spirit, that's how you'll know that it's true and you shouldn't let anything else convince you of it. By the end of our conversation we gave him a Book of Mormon and he agreed to read it without bias and to pay attention to how he feels when he reads it. It was awesome and I'm looking forward to seeing what his experience is.
Elder Jared Petersen
E. Smith, Tristan, and E. Petersen
Letter April 20, 2015
We've had a pretty great week this week. I think the highlight was this guy named Jack. He's an older guy who we tracted into. He welcomed us in and told us all about his son who died in Iraq. We also tried to slip in as much about the gospel as we could and at the end we gave him a Book of Mormon and invited him to church. He also told us all about how much he admired us and how we were such great young men to be doing what we do. We called him Sunday morning and reminded him about church and he came! It was exciting because it's so hard to get most people to come to church. He was late, but he went to Elders Quorum and he said he enjoyed it. He also came with us to dinner at a members house and we had a good lesson with him there. He said that he believes everything that we tell him and he told the members about how great we were. The only concern that he had was that he wanted to read the Book of Mormon and get it into his head! It was so cool how much he wanted to know about it for himself. That's really the best way to know about the Book of Mormon, and we really helped him understand that he should only believe it if God tells him that it's true.
Elder Jared Petersen
Letter April 27, 2015
This week has been pretty good, we've stayed pretty busy and we've got a lot done. Jack is one of our investigators, he's an older guy, and he came to church yesterday which was awesome! All we have to do is call him in the morning to help him wake up and he'll come to church. Church was pretty good, Jack had some good questions that we were able to answer later in the day when we went over to his house to teach him. We taught him the Plan of Salvation and it was pretty much the same as every lesson we teach him. We tell him all about it and he believes everything that we tell him. He said that he's learned more in the last 2 weeks of meeting with us than he has in his whole 66 years of life. He also was telling the member who we took with us all about how we were the best young men he's ever met and just talking us up like crazy. It's pretty cool to see that he thinks so much of us, but the best thing is seeing him learn more about the gospel and be humble enough to listen to us and want to learn.
Eder Jared Petersen