Monday, September 11, 2017

Hide yo wife, hide yo kids, IRMA is here

My lovelies. How are you beautiful souls doing around the world?

IRMA- I'll cut to the chase and tell you what you really want to know, Hurricane Irma is not going to hit Fairhope, sadly.....but the East half of the mission is on total lock down! It's been so exciting here! Wow. Last Monday Elder Southway went on and on about how the hurricane was coming this way and we needed to be prepared, me and Sister Evensen were like "yeah yeah". Well the next day President Smith orders a mission wide conference call and he very strictly instructs us to get water cases, top our gas, and have a go bag ready if we needed to leave within a half hour. WHAT.



Now, I'm not your average Joe who goes into panic mode, but I'll tell you how foolish we felt not having any water and having to run to Walmart and all the water was completely SOLD OUT! WE HAD TO BUY RICH PEOPLE WATER (dasani). Lesson of the 10 Virgins I'm tellin ya. #calledtorepentance



-Sis E preppin for IRMA





Basically this week has been like the funnest week of my whole mission. Nobody is keeping their return apts because of hurricane prep but literally ANYBODY will talk to us if you use the word Irma in your approach. Blessings in disguise! We debated whether or not to make cardboard signs that say "REPENT NOW- IRMA IS HERE" and stand on the street corners preachin. 😉
Alright alright. Thursday we went back to my homeland of Fort Walton, what a celestial area, and we had Mission Leadership Council with President and Sister Smith. Whoa talk about some spiritual giants. I couldn't even soak in all their inspiration. Basically it's just this meeting where we talk about moving the work forward across the mission. It was AWESOME. But this is SO EMBARRASSING, I'm in this room with crazy good missionaries and we had to take a vote on what we thought needed improvement, and for the first option I WAS THE ONLY PERSON THAT RAISED MY HAND. HAHAHAHAHA Me and Sister Evensen could not stop laughing!!!
.
Straight from there I went and stayed the night in Mobile with Sister Polanco on an exchange. Dang straight Mobile was intense. HAHA. We went and proselyted all day in a town called Pritchard. (If you've ever seen that meme "hide yo kids, hide yo wife" that was made there) Met some AMAZING people! It was so awesome! Then we went back to Fairhope for Zone conference the next day.

-My Zone Sistas
At 8:30 at night me and Sister Evensen find out that because of the storm situation our neighboring zone would be combined with us.... what. So we had to train a whole bunch of missionaries, like 60 something. You can feel the power of other missionaries. I made a fool of myself multiple times but all is well. Moral of the story is, me and Sister Evensen are basically best buds with President because we laugh at all his jokes! HAHAHA, We're like his personal audience.

-President and his lackeys
Sunday rolls around and we go to this appointment, they don't answer. But while we're standing on his porch 3 police cars slowly round the corner to a house. 🚓 We both kind of agree that it's a little sketch, but we wear tags, we're fine. Next we walk over to their neighbor and this really creepy car with completely tinted windows rolls right next to us and stops.. Then this really drunk guy standing outside tells us that someone down the street just got shot! THE SPIRIT BASICALLY YELLED AT US TO GET OUTTA DODGE. We thank him and quickly make our way back to our car. I will neither confirm nor deny that Sister Evensen held my hand because she was so scared. Isn't that so cool that Heavenly Father kept us safe. (:

Tracy is in a tough situation so please please pray for her! And this coming week we're focusing on 5's. 5 BCDs, 5 Friends at Sacrament Mtg, 5 New Friends. (: Pray for 5's.

Well friends, I want you to know that God loves His children. Straight up. No if's, and's, or but's. Reach out and spread the love. Don't wait until a hurricane is on it's way to be your best self. We experienced a lot of miracles this week and if I wrote them all you'd have to get a life long subscription. Just know that God is working miracles here. We are messengers of truth. And like I've been saying since one year ago September, the Florida Tallahassee Mission has a big storm coming. 

I have just begun to fight.

SISTER  p e t e r s e n ☀

Monday, September 4, 2017

I say, that what you say, is what I SAY

Put it on the books, you heard it here first, miracles are straight going down in Bama. WARNING: Please properly secure your surroundings before continuing the following email, in the words of Mitchell Mosher, it's gonna get "lit."

Dumping tea like she's a Yankee
Tracy- What a wonderful human being. On Monday night we committed her to live the Word of Wisdom. I promised her I would run a mile every single day until she gets baptized. We went back on Wednesday and she confessed that she had been drinking the rest of her jug of sweet tea trying to finish it off. We were devastated. So one thing led to another and the spirit did it's thing, and we were standing in her kitchen cheering her on as she poured every last drop of the sweet tea down the drain!!!! SHE IS SUCH A MIRACLE!

I've ran 26.2 in the pouring rain, what's 1.3 more?
.....then I got super super sick on wednesday and thursday because there's actually a hurricane outside and we wanted to keep our promise about running so we still ran in the pouring rain...... don't try this one at home kids.

Later in the week we had exchanges with some sisters and it was SO FUN! I was like "okie doke Sister Whatcott, I have no idea what I'm doing so let's just go for it." And then MIRACLES! We happened to go to the library and while we were there, this guy walks straight past us, turns around, and then introduces himself! As we talk with him, we find out that he has been friends with all the missionaries that have come through this area for the past couple years or so. Turns out he's been kind of out of contact with them but he was so nice! And get this, his last name is "Moormen" LIKE WHAT. That's not even a joke. He ended up coming to our volleyball shin dig that night. Well it was good at first, but then we quickly got into a soft bible bash, LIKE WHAT. The Elders, just like walked away, HAHA. So me and Sister Evensen held our ground, invited, testified, showed charity, welcomed him to stay and play volleyball. It was crazy. But I felt like the spirit was actually able to be in that convo because we were standing in the church! MIRACLE.

(SAUCES)
So basically me and Sis E have the most unified companionship with the spirit and we were able to testify and back each other and it was beautiful. The next day at church our lesson was on witnesses and double edged swords. The gospel will pierce souls when the testimonies of two or three (spirit) witnesses bear it. Whenever I have no idea what to do, I look at my companion, we look up, and we say that what He says, is what we say. Because we're the ultimate Newsies, spreading the GOOD NEWS OF THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL.

SEIZE THE DAY, SEIZE THE MOMENT. And for all you humans in the world not living in Alabama.... Ezekiel 20:29, my heart goes out to ya.

It's a birthday present.... from ME
Welp. Nothing new for the new kids on the block. Oh except one small thing.... HAPPY 8 MONTHS TO ME AND SIS E🎉         

 SISTER  p e t e r s e n ☀






Monday, August 28, 2017

the sad story of my life














Sweet Home ALABAMA. Cliche? Get over it.

ALABAMA BABY!!!!! I LITERALLY MADE IT. I AM LIVING THE DREAM!



This past week has been such a bizarre dream. Monday/Tuesday was complete chaos getting ready to leave Marianna. We went to appointments and said goodbye to people and just ran around like chickens with their heads chopped off! BUT I'll have y'all know, I did manage to pack all my things into my 3 suitcases...... with a laundry basket for my shoes hahaha. BUT THAT'S REALLY GOOD FOR A SISTER! After the ward party Tuesday night (they were celebrating P. Monson's birthday HAHAHA),                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             we drove to Tallahassee and spent the night with some sisters there. Which was such a tender mercy because one of the sisters served in Marianna and Fairhope so I got the goodbye and hello! 


Transfer Day: GOLLY. So exhausting. I helped people pack up stuff all morning and geez louise Florida is a warm little bugger I'll tell you. We sweat a lot that day. So I rode the Hasselhough! I drove on the transfer 15 seater van on the longest stretch, Tallahassee to Mobile! It wasn't that bad but I was so tired after being energetic and upbeat all day long to please the fans. But I did see all my comps leaving like Sis Ramadhar and Sis Saunders (: When I got to Mobile stop you already know Sis E greeted me like a long lost puppy that finally returned home. We were flippin. And basically we haven't stopped talking and laughing and straight up preaching the gospel since that moment. I literally love serving. I just love my calling. I love scattering sunshine into people's souls.














this random dude gave us free donuts because we're missionaries. Legit I love Alabama
Fairhope. what. THIS IS THE CUTEST PLACE IN THE WORLD. I mean seriously. This place is like so perfect. Everything here just ignites my soul. I love being in Alabama, I love the people. Fairhope is like "small town" but it's like classy southern. Not just run down old time southern. IT'S SO CHARMING. And we are working with amazing investigators. AHHHHHH. We had a lesson with Tracy about the Plan of Salvation and she was so excited and just loved everything we taught her. It's lessons like that when I know that this is so true. There's no way something false could bring so much happiness and joy into a conversation. She is getting baptized September 23rd, send prayers (:

dun dunna dun dun dun ~STORY TIME WITH SISTA P

We knocked on someone's door who wasn't home and I get stung by a bee, 🐝 so I was a little grumpy. Then Sister Evensen was like, "Why did the Lord want us to be in this neighborhood today? Who do we need to talk to?" Right then some guy pulls up next door and gets out of his car. So we speed walk trying to get to him but he goes inside and we knock on the door and he's totally not interested, no worries thank you for your time sir! We look across the street and this older gentleman is washing his car. So to break the ice I say hello and ask if he has any cream for my bee stung finger! He was very alarmed and he directed us firmly to take a seat on his front porch while he went inside to get something. John came back out with a pharmacy in his arms and his front shirt pocket was stuffed full of creams and ointments. HAHAHAH. It was so kind! He was so so cute! He then proceeded to cake my finger in antibiotic ointment just to be sure. He was so cute! We started talking about our purpose as missionaries and he got really emotional. He told us a story of a young man that was in the Navy with him many many years ago who was a Mormon. John told us how much he always loved his example of the Savior and just being so Christlike. It was such a miracle that we got to talk to John and that he had the opportunity to serve us with my finger. We are going back to teach John and his wife Marilyn later this week. 

I know this is not just a coincidence. I know we are on the Lord's errand and He is working miracles all around us every single day. Open your eyes to His miracles. They are everywhere and they are not just limited to His missionaries. The day of miracles has not ceased. 

Well that's about it for the weekly. Sister Evensen is all of my wildest dreams come true. I swear it shouldn't be allowed for us to be companions because we basically are like best friends and we have way to much fun for this to feel like work. We talk to everyone. We even parked our car on the side of the road and ran down this girl walking! Take advantage of every blessing God weaves into your daily life. 

SISTER  p e t e r s e n ☀




Monday, August 21, 2017

TOTAL ECLIPSE of the HEART

classic pics
Boy, do I have a treat for you..... The last 72 hours have been the most emotionally exhausting in my entire life. More than my breakups, my makeups, death, life, high school, mtc, my soul is spent. But I mean, every now and then I fall apart ya know? Here's the gist.... Thursday evening President Smith swung up here to the boonies and we had a good quick interview. His love and piercing eyes just spoke to my spirit so closely. I got an overwhelming feeling like something was about to change. I laughed and kind of started bawling and told him I did not want to leave Marianna. He nodded and said, "I wouldn't be moving you Sister Petersen." Well obvi, I was uber on edge the next couple of days in anticipation for our Zone Leaders to call about transfers. 
eclipse I legit took this pic
For 72 hours my heart felt as though it was being ripped apart. I cried like 28 times. Well I was studying, and in my papers I found Elder Bednar's last address about serving as a missionary and being assigned to labor in a certain area of the world. This scripture pierced my very soul.

Wherefore, go ye and preach my gospel, whether to the north or to the south, to the east or to the west, it mattereth not, for ye cannot go amiss.
I suddenly became completely aligned with God's will no matter what it might be.

Sunday afternoon as we were driving through some back roads we got a phone call from President Smith himself. What. I pulled over because my whole body was shaking. He informed us that Sister Anderson is going to be training a new missionary here in Marianna, yep the tears started rolling. Well what happened next changed my life. President got very quiet and said, "Sister Petersen are you there?" Through a little voice cracking I answered. Next he said, "You will be serving in Fairhope, Alabama, with Sister Evensen."

Sister Evensen. 

SISTER EVENSEN.

SISTER EVENSEN.

!!!!!SISTER EVENSEN!!!!!
I sat completely shocked. I didn't even answer. And then I said, "Are you pullin my leg President??" HAHAHAHAHAAHAH SO EMBARRASSING. OH MY GOSH THEN THE CHEERING SCREAMING AND JUMPING UP AND DOWN TOOK PLACE IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE ON SOME ABANDONED DIRT ROAD. I think President was very inspired because God knew I would go kicking and screaming unless in some way he could top the miracles I have been experiencing in Marianna. He knew I need her now tonight, I need her more than ever! We will be holdin on forever. He knew this is the only was I would truly react all in, cheerful, about my assignment!!!! HE IS SO WONDERFUL. Literally I am full of wonder and awe that He thinks the Mobile Zone can handle what me and my best buddy are about to hit it with. BOIIIIII

yours truly with all that Southern Charm



So in my farewell to Marianna.. My heart has been Total Eclipsed. This is a very very BITTER SWEET move. But I love my dear friends I have here with all my heart. We will meet again one day, I know it. This morning we stopped by one of my dearest friends Ms. Mary Ellen and she told me I'll always be her missionary, then she pinky promised me that she is going to take the lessons from the missionaries so I can come back and baptize her. <3 This week we worked hard. We started a Book of Mormon class that we had many people come to, we saw a lot of people and our group of investigators truly is God's elect. I love my friends and family here and I know God has a plan for them.
Other sheep I have which are not of this fold...in Fairhope Alabama. (: So turn around bright eyes because the Mobile Zone's gotta big storm a comin'






Ms. Mary Ellen and us with our gnarly shades
Go do something amazing while the Fire Nation is at it's weakest! GOD SPEED KIDS

SISTER  p e t e r s e n 🌘

Long Live the #MaryHadALittleLambDistrict



Monday, August 14, 2017

Let it rain, Let it pour

Blessings come through raindrops and this week we had MIRACLE HURRICANES! Miracanes? Hurricles? I've heard it both ways.

Friday we had an awesome day. Everything we planned actually happened. Well by 5:00 we had planned to go contact people at the park and it started pouring rain, thus nobody would be outside at a park. We brainstormed for a minute and both agreed that the hand of the Lord was in our planning and we needed to go to the park even if it was a hurricane outside! 

grateful for gazebos
When we got to the park not a single car was there. We still got out and ran to get cover under the gazebo. Not even 10 seconds after we sat down this twenty something guy gets cover under the roof to like a smoke. Like I have no earthly clue where this dude even came from! NONE! So of course I'm like, "Hey you" and immediately we dive into a lengthy discussion about God. After about 20 minutes of talking about who/what God is and how Jesus Christ plays a role in that, along comes another fella. His brother! Both of them smoked about 3 packs combined by the time we finished our conversation, but we taught both of them about the Restoration and gave them Book of Mormons. They were on vacation from North Carolina so we sent them as referrals up there. 

Here's the miracle of the tale: It was pouring rain and thundering = captive audience under the gazebo protection. They were searching for understanding about God = very open to the spirit. They were on vacation in Marianna = HUGE MIRACLE BECAUSE WHO IN THE WORLD VISITS THIS PLACE ON VACATION. Miracles come in thunderstorms. 

oh mercy, I had some divine meals this week. I'll just leave it at that. mmmmmm. ok.

national cat day with Southern
Southern legit sobbed when we taught her the Word of Wisdom... it was a rough lesson. Send prayers. HAHAHA. "I am a basic white girl who needs her coffee." HAHAHAHA

Sister Housel my STL from Dothan spent the day with me here, and she gave me a really remarkable talk that gave me a lot of understanding about the atonement of Jesus Christ and Repentance. 

"Living perfectly is not the plan. Repentance is the plan. Jesus Christ is the plan." I think we erroneously equate perfection with living a perfect life, with never failing or falling short, but Jesus Christ is the only one who ever did or ever will do that. Perfection for us, then, must be about something else.
When we turn our broken pieces over to the Savior, our gaps are filled with Him—with His perfection—and we are made complete; we are finished by the Great Creator through the restorative power of “the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2). We come to know the Savior not just by recognizing and reverencing His scars but by recognizing and reverencing our own. We are bound to the Savior through our mutual scars, “and with His stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5; see also verse 4).
Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world, desires to mend your broken pieces, fill your empty spaces, and make of you a vessel that is more beautiful and whole.

May you each find the strength to fail and, in the hands of your Savior, the power to finish."

I love y'all so much. Keep it fresh and ranchy and FINISH STRONG.

SISTER  p e t e r s e n  ☀

life in photos:

sis Cobart makes costumes for Civil War reenactments and gave us confederate flags lol



trying to get some webbed feet contacts

Monday, August 7, 2017

More. Many. Much. MOOSEN!

Hi, Sister Petersen here, with another weekly email from the promise land also known by the name of Marianna, Florida. 

We set a contacting goal this week with our district. 70 people for every companionship. I'll just skip to the end of this story and inform you that we did not reach this goal HAHAH, but we did meet a lot of really awesome people that we otherwise would not have talked to! We contacted in Payless, TWICE. It's golden, you tell the worker you need close toed comfy shoes, they ask why, and BAM. or should I say...... BOM! (book of Mormon) (lol)

This email is going to be shorter, here's all I have to say. Being a missionary is tough. But it's really not. We get to get out everyday and do something meaningful. Not many people can say that, not many people want to have that opportunity. This week we lost quite a few of our friends whom we have been praying for to progress.  They have chosen in the words of Jynx, "The Mormon's not for me." Well you know what! WE LOVE YOU ANYWAY! Yes we wish everyone would just COME TO CHURCH but we have agency. And, that's a beautiful gift.

Get out and go love someone! Go spread Jesus Christ's love! Wake up, and do something MORE. More holy, more worthwhile, more christlike, more important, more meaningful. I love you all so much. All is well in Zion, we're just searching for the elect and Happy Are We. 

- SISTER  p e t e r s e n☀