|Ambur & Andrew's Wedding Reception (Most of the Petersen cousins)|
Jared's response to this picture was priceless!
"Yeah I saw something odd, I barely recognize half of them and there's a couple I don't even recognize. And I'm not talking to the ones who have been added to the family since I've been gone. And 2 other things, where the heck is Braden, and there's this kid in the pictures who's taller than everyone else, and has flippy hair like I did. He looks kinda like Briggs, but I know Briggs can't be that tall. Who is it? Haha Oh I almost forgot to mention, I love how I'm in there and I'm 2 times as big as everyone else hahaha. "
More from his letter on Oct 12:
We visited a guy who was baptized in 2007 and probably hasn't been visited since shortly after that. He was really nice, and welcoming. President Starkey asked him about his conversion story, and he talked about the incredible feelings he had at the time. He also brought up that those feelings are still in him, but they're buried. So I pulled out a Book of Mormon and handed it to him and said, "You know what this is? It's a shovel." He wants to meet with us more and he's interested in getting back into church and helping his family learn more if they're willing. It was so cool to see how quickly his interest in the gospel came back. One of our investigators has been going through cancer recently, and he has a check up coming up soon. We visited him and his wife, and they just like to talk a lot. Sometimes they like to talk about the gospel, and sometimes they talk about everything else. It was an interesting visit, we were going back and forth a bit from the gospel and other topics and it was getting close to when we had to leave, so we asked him if he'd like a blessing before we left. He said yes, and we gave him one of the most powerful blessings I've ever given. It wasn't like he was suddenly healed, or like I spoke incredibly powerfully, in fact I got a little confused and mentioned his upcoming surgery that had actually already happened. The spirit still filled the room though, and when I finished this big strong man was choking on his tears while he thanked us. His wife only said, 'That was incredible.' And we both followed a prompting to talk about the priesthood more, without saying anything about it to each other. We told them how that feeling they had was the spirit and it was testifying to them about the power of the priesthood. The priesthood can only be explained so far by words, but the feelings it brings gives understanding that can't be expressed. We told them how they could use that feeling to know about the truth of the gospel we preach. I thought of an analogy that really clicked with him. I told him that reading the Book of Mormon and praying about it can change his life, if he lets it. Reading the Book of Mormon, listening to the missionaries, and learning about the gospel is like having a car revved and ready to go, but a car doesn't move when it's revving. You have to drop the clutch and when you pray, with the intention to follow whatever God tells you, is the moment your life will change. That is how you drop the clutch, and get the tires spinning. I could tell that he really got it, and his wife also followed what I was saying. So we asked them to do that, to read the Book of Mormon and to pray about it and to pay attention to the feelings they had, because if they felt the same thing they did during the blessing that means God is telling them that what we teach is true, and that their lives can change. It was one of the most powerful lessons I've ever taught. Love y'all,
Elder Jared Petersen