Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Stay Together

Dear Family,

Something super crazy happened this week that made me think of "That's So Raven." Remember the episode where Raven thinks her parents are going to get divorced so she dresses like a country singer and performs "Stay Together"? Well, what happened this week was sort of like that. Two elders in my zone were biking on Saturday night and somehow got separated. We found out about this at 9:28, when the zone leaders asked us to go out and check his house, the church, etc. We left and drove around checking all these places for him, then got out of our car at his house to look around and knock on the windows, just like totally normal people do. Apparently the elders leave their back door open, so we went inside and checked the garage for his bike and stuff. (This all felt so disobedient, but the zone leaders told us to.) We didn't find him, but we were asked to stay at the house to watch for him and to start calling the local hospitals. WHAT? So we did. By the time it was 11:10 I was sick to my stomach with worry and trying so hard not to fall asleep. I decided to pray and turned over to get on my knees when I saw a blinking red light. I could tell it was a bike light, so I basically just threw open the door of the car, leaped out onto the rocks with bare feet, and yelled "Elder Keith?" and heard back a faint "yes." I almost cried. 

Because of who I am as a person I commenced to mother him. I made him sit down in our car, eat my granola bar, and drink a bottle of water. He told us he'd been separated from Elder Briggs at 7:45 and had been biking since then trying to get home. Now, why he didn't ask somebody to use their phone and call his companion I can't say (especially when he used the GPS on someone's phone!!), but I'm so grateful that he is okay. I should not have watched the Saratov Approach because I was certain he was locked in someone's cement basement (which is completely unrealistic because basements aren't a thing in Florida).

Other than that, we've been working with Matthew. He's grown so much since we started teaching him! He talked about stealing or smoking and just kept saying, "That's the old Matt." That is exactly what repentance is about! He's doing really well, but our ward is not supportive. They've already decided that he is just like these 2 other recent converts who are causing a lot of problems for the ward and they can't move on. *sigh* My mission is teaching me so much about what kind of member I want to be when I get home! Matt is a really special guy. He's preparing to be baptized on December 10th and is keeping all the commitments we leave him, so he's doing really well! Now if we can just get the ward on board we'll have something going here.

We've really struggled to find people to teach in this area but recently starting teaching Maritza and her 10 yr old son, Juan. Maritza has an aunt who is Mormon and told her to check out mormon.org. She requested a Bible and a Book of Mormon, so that's how we found her. They're Catholic right now, but not for long :) They're reading the Book of Mormon together and loving it! They weren't able to come to church yesterday because they had to go to baptism classes at their church, but we're meeting with them tonight to teach them. I'm pumped!

Wait-I forgot about Thanksgiving! How embarrassing. Every day is the same as a missionary, you know? Well, we were fed breakfast lunch and dinner and I have now been fed a Thanksgiving dinner four times this week. Haha I'm so glad the members like us and want to take care of us! We had actual dinner with the Tylers, who feed us every Sunday. They're the best family! Brother Tyler told me I should be a stand-up comedian yesterday, so obviously he's in my good graces. I made Grandma's Pumpkin Chiffon Pie and it was a huge hit. They said they haven't even touched the pie they bought at Costco because the ones we made were just too good. Go Grandma!

Anyway, I feel like I'm just rambling on. I love you all so much! If you haven't seen the new Christmas video, Light the World, go watch it IMMEDIATELY! 

Sister Peterson

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