Well, not a lot has happened this week. I'm working on a lot of things. I'm trying to better myself as a missionary and as a person, because I wont be a missionary forever (; Before I tell you what I'm trying to improve, I want to tell you a story.
There was a man who lived comfortably with his wife and 4 kids. Their house wasn't big, in fact, it was quite small. But they made it work and were grateful for the roof over their heads. One day, the man's mother fell sick and had to move into the small home and life became complicated for the family. "There's no space to hardly breathe!" yelled the father. "What will we do? We can't live like this!" the wife cried. The father said, "I'll go to the wise man in the mountains. He'll know what to do." So the father set off. He took the long hike into the mountains to find an old wise man who was rumored to have all of the answers. "Wise man, my mother has been sick and had to move into our humble home and we have no space! We can hardly breathe! What can we do?" asked the father. The wise man though a moment and then said, "Do you have a goat?" the father, confused, said, "A goat? Yes, but why?" The wise man grinned as he said, "Move the goat into the home and come back in a week." Confused and frustrated, the man went on his way. He did what the wise man said and moved the goat into the home and the life of the family only got worse. The smell of the goat was awful and there was even less space than before. But they persevered and when the end of the week came around the father went running for the mountains to speak with the wise man. "Please tell me I can take the goat out of the house." Yelled the father. The wise man held his hand up and asked, "How was your week?" The father of the small family explain how much suffering had happen
ed in the week. The smell, the messes, the chewed furniture, and the space the goat took up. The wise man said, "Good. do you have chickens?" The father hesitantly said yes. "Good. Move the chickens into the home and come back in a week." The wise man said. The father tried to protest but the wise man raised his hand and sent him on his way. The father walked slowly to his home with his head hung low. The family suffered in that week. Not only did they have a goat in the house, but now they were sharing the small home with 5 chickens too! I'm sure you can imagine the messes. At the end of the week, the father went running to the wise man and as he arrived began to beg, "Please don't ask me to move anything else into the home! We almost didn't make it through the week! There were so many messes to clean, the smell is terrible, and my wife cant handle the chickens anymore. Please, what do I do now?" The wise man said, "Take the goat out of the home and come back in a week." The man ran home and took the goat out of the house and in a week, returned to the wise man. "How was your week?" asked the wise man. "Wonderful! Without the goat eating our food in the pantry we were able to eat full meals every day! And there weren't as many messes to clean! Sure, the chickens still bug us, but it isn't nearly as bad as it was before." The father said. The wise man smiled and said, "Good. Now go and take the chickens out of your home and come back in a week." The father ran home singing and dancing, overwhelmed with excitement at the thought of taking the chickens out of his home. The following week the father returned to the wise man. "How was your week, my friend?" asked the wise man. The father explained to the wise men why that week had been the best of his life. "The house was so clean! The smell was so nice without the animals! There was so much space in the house! We could finally breathe!" The wise man smiled and said, "My work is done." And the Father realized how happy he was in the same situation that he had previously hated and suffered. The father smiled and return home and hugged his wife and kids and never complained ever again.
As I pondered what I wanted to improve in my life, the impression came to mind, "Appreciate your blessings more, complain about your trials less." Easier said than done. But if we realize that it could be a lot worse and start to focus on being grateful, our lives will become so much more enjoyable. What humbles me is the thought, "There is someone out there who does have it worse." So I pray for that person and for Heavenly Father to help me see through eyes more grateful. A change of attitude is an amazing and powerful thing. I testify of a change of attitude. It has gotten me through many difficulties in my mission and I feel much happier because of it.
I hope all is well where you are.
Also, an update on what I'm doing on my mission right now! I'm working in the small town of Pehuajó as the Branch President of a small branch. I've been humbled by the opportunity and I'm constantly learning. It's been hard, but I know the Lord has been by my side every step. THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR PRAYERS!!