Serving from March 2014 to March 2016

Mission Address: (send everything to this address and they will forward to him daily)

Elder Jared Petersen
Tennessee Knoxville Mission
11320 Station West Dr Ste 101
Farragut, TN 37934

Friday, January 22, 2016

January 18, 2016 Zone Conference/Stake Conference

January 18, 2016

We had our zone conference this week. There was a training about
explaining words that people might not be familiar with and afterwards
we had a role play. They give us a couple minutes to think about what
we'd say for the role play, and E Martinez and I thought we'd be
teaching each other. So after we'd prepared our own thoughts they told
us they wanted us to teach another companionship as a companionship,
so we had to completely change our plans on the spot. I highlighted a
few of the words we'd explain more and told E Martinez we'd just
switch off. It went really well, I did the first one so E Martinez
could see how to do it and he did his part perfectly. We were talking
about how it went afterwards and they said it was really good and only
had one or 2 small things that could be improved. When we told them we
thought we were teaching alone, so we only prepared with each other
for like 15 seconds, they couldn't believe it.
We also visited a less active lady and taught her the restoration. It
was one of the smoothest restoration lessons I've ever taught, E
Martinez is getting to be a really good teacher. We also talked to her
about some of her concerns. I asked how her scripture reading is going
and she said it's sporadic. So I told her that reading her scriptures
more consistently will make a difference and she said she would. We
also talked about her coming to church and she said she'd give herself
a stern talking to to get herself to church. I told her we could call
her Sunday morning and give her a reinforcement stern talking to and
she said that'd be good. She ended up being called in to work, so she
wasn't able to come. She was pretty upset about being called in, so I
think we'll see her at church pretty soon.
We visited a part member family and it was a ton of fun. They have 2
boys who are 9 and 11, and there's never a dull moment with them. When
we pulled up they were outside with their Grandpa. So we talked to
him, he told us he's a Reverend in the Pentecostal church. He's a
pretty nice guy and we talked with him about religion a bit. I think
he was surprised how much of what he believes is the same as what we
believe. I think he was also surprised about how much a couple of 19
and 20 year old guys could know about the scriptures and religion. So
we had a good conversation with him. After talking with him the 9 year
old boy wanted to show us how he rides his goat. We went to the edge
of the field and that little boy just walked right up to this goat
that's about as tall as he is and he grabs it and pulls it across the
field and hops on while the goat runs back across the field. He did it
probably over 15 times, it was hilarious because after a couple times
he decided to ride it backwards. We went up to the house after that
and the boys mom who is a member asked us, "How did y'all find us?"
Haha They live pretty far out there and our poor fusion definitely
wasn't made to drive on the roads that lead to their house. Their
address also doesn't show up on a GPS and the directory doesn't even
have a house number, it only has a street name of a street nearby. We
told her how a couple weeks ago at church the boys told us how to get
there. She told us that since we were able to find their house they'll
have to have us over for dinner. We're really looking forward to that.
We had Stake Conference this week. It was broadcast to over 100 Stakes
in the South. There was a story I thought was really cool. There's a
juvenile detention facility in Texas for 12-18 year olds. They have
their schooling in the facility and they have a football team that the
older boys can join if they're well behaved. This football team
travels to other schools to play high security football games. It's
like the high school version of The Longest Yard. The football team
had a record of 0 wins, 8 losses. They went to play against a
Christian school, and the coach there asked that half the audience sit
on the other side and cheer for the opposite team. He asked them to
learn the names and numbers of the boys on the other team and show
them support. They cheered for them and even boo'd at some of the refs
calls against them. The team played better than they ever had, scoring
I think 2 touch downs. After the game the two teams got together to
say a prayer and one of the boys from the juvenile facility asked to
offer it. In his prayer he said, "We didn't know there were so many
people in the world who cared about us." The coach of juvenile
detention team told the Christian coach, "You'll never know how much
you did for these boys tonight. You'll never know."
That was the coolest story to me. Something President Griffin talked
about in zone conference this week was what sets successful people
apart from unsuccessful people. He's obviously a business man, but he
has a great way of thing his business knowledge to the gospel. One of
the things he said is that successful people compliment, rather than
criticize. That's stuck with me, and I think that's why the story was
so cool to me. The majority of the world will tear others down, why
not be a rebel and lift people up?
In our priesthood meeting last night one man talked about how Jesus
was a revolutionary in many of the things he did. He didn't follow
what the general population did, and often had to stand up for the
things he did that were contrary to popular belief. Like when he and
his apostles picked corn to eat on the sabbath. He said that we should
all try follow Christ's example and be revolutionary in our sabbath
day observance. We should base it off of the sign we want to send to
God, rather than just following general traditions.
Love y'all,

Elder Jared Petersen

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