December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas!! I love Skype! Dec. 27, 2010

It was so fun to be able to see and talk to the family. I could not stop smiling and giggling. I love my family so much. I know that I was sent into this family for a reason. There are so many things about my family that I have come to love and adore even more now that I’ve been on a mission, but number one is how much our home is centered on the gospel and the teachings of Jesus Christ. We were not perfect, but I do see our family striving to be the best, starting with the change of our nightly team chant when I was young, It went from don’t let the bed bugs bite to the Pedersen’s choose the right and I think in that moment we really set the tone on how our home was to be like. I'm grateful for countless Family home evenings, lessons, Sundays, family councils and father interviews, talks with Mom and Dad one on one. Date nights with Mom and Dad and the time spent with family on numerous family vacations away from the world and wrapped up in our own family. When I mean wrapped up, I think of the countless memories where we are crammed into a moterhome on our way to the next adventure with nothing to fill the time but conversations of life, relationships and God. I have so many memories to choose from and this Christmas was just one of them.
I truly missed the family this Christmas and felt a lot like Christopher, in feeling I was going to cry the whole time, but when It came down to it, I knew this is where I wanted to be. This is where my love has been. A missionary truly is a person who leaves there family for a time so that others can be together with there's for eternity. I love that plaque you sent me. We are creating bonds like the ones I have with the family. I truly have felt that as we have spent time with families in the ward. They are not all members here and mostly we have part member homes or less-active spouses so it is a lot of work on our hands, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I have found such a great love for the families here. I just can't believe the love and compassion they have shown toward us.
I feel unworthy and weak sometimes in the things that I know and the things that I receive because I want to be so much more than I am and to give so much more than I have but I know I can accomplish it through Jesus Christ because as I look to him for my example I learn so much more and it pushes me to become more and give more. I know this Gospel teaches truth and there is nothing better than that. God is real and he knows me by name. He knows my life story and my life lessons and every once in awhile he reminds me of what I have learned by testing that knowledge because he loves me. I love him with all of my heart. When I talk with my Heavenly Father I feel he is listening. I talk with him and he listens with love because that is what I feel on the other end. It's something I cannot explain but I know everyone can feel if they just kneel and listen for the feeling.
Oh man I know I don’t have a whole lot of time left and sometimes I catch myself worrying about coming home and what I will do and then I think, who got me here? God, what has kept me here? God, who has provided my way? God. When I look at it, I know what life will hold for me; happiness, because I know I will never turn away from this gospel, and that brings lasting happiness and everything else I can worry about later. God knows and that is enough for me. A promise was made to us by our mission president, President Barry who I have come to love and admire more than I ever thought I would. He and his wife sister Barry are truly inspired of God and they have become like my parents. They have such a love about them that can't be explained but felt every moment of every day. He promised to us that the missionaries that serve obediently and give there all to God will never leave the church and that our converts will become strong members of the church. I live for that promise, not for me but for my future family and for the families of my converts. I love them all so much. I was praying for them individually the other night, because I worry about them and I want to know what is happening, but I felt a great love for them. It is the best feeling you will ever feel.
I love my mission! Not for the name tag, or the area, or the experiences I’ve gained which have changed my view and belief more than words can say, but it is the people that have changed my life. The people make all the difference. I LOVE the people here. Oh man. How great is my life right now? I just can't believe sometimes the blessing that lay before me every day. I have come to realize that I have always wanted to serve a mission, I just never knew it. What a blessing it has been.

Oh my goodness! Thank you for the pictures! Who's babies are all these? Just kidding I know who's they are, it's just crazy! They are all so old. Brandon is huge! The gifts that you made were awesome and what fun new ideas. The girls look amazing! So stinkin cute. Man, I just love Christmas! Tell everyone that I love them so much! I love you family!

Love you!
~your Sister Pedersen~



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