This week was great! We taught a lot more lessons then usual and found tons more people to teach. Last night we had a BBQ at the apartment complex and it was a huge success. We had over a hundred people show up and the night ended with 14 new investigators to teach. Life is great.
One of my favorite things about being a missionary is being able to hear so many peoples life stories. Not only that, but being able to help them move on to the next chapter. Last night at the BBQ a young woman came up to us and asked if we could go somewhere away from the people to talk. We did and she ended up spilling everything that has happened to her in the past year. People seem to do that to us a lot. Even if they're things we really don't want to know.
But anyways, she's a single mother who's child is in possession by CPS. She has spent all of her money on getting her back and by doing so is being evicted from her apartment. Because of this she came to us for help. One thing she said however hit me pretty hard. She said, "I appreciate what you guys do. I see you walking around all the time and even with all of this going on in my life it makes my day. You two never stop smiling even with the hard work you do in this Arizona heat. Seeing you guys so happy helps me to be happier too."
What she said really triggered my thoughts. It helped me to realize the impact we can make on other people simply by the attitude we carry with us. I never knew she was watching. All I knew was that life is a lot easier when you are happy.
Because of what she said it makes me wonder how many other people have been influenced by the attitude I have. Whether for good, or for bad. I think it really comes down to how grateful we are. I can think of many times in my life that I have been ungrateful and because of such an attitude things have not gone my way. Here on my mission it helps me to realize how much I have been given. Even though things don't always go my way it's so much easier to have a smile on my face because of the realization of the daily blessings my loving father on Heaven sees fit to give me.
This then presents the question, how can we be more grateful? President Joseph F. Smith, sixth President of the Church, provided an answer. He said, "The grateful man sees so much in the world to be thankful for, and with him the good outweighs the evil. Love overpowers jealousy, and light drives darkness out of his life. Pride destroys our gratitude and sets up selfishness in its place. How much happier we are in the presence of a grateful and loving soul, and how careful we should be to cultivate, through the medium of a prayerful life, a thankful attitude toward God and man!”
I'm grateful for the ability that god gives me to be thankful and for all that he gives me to be thankful for. I'm beyond blessed and I need to realize it more often. That woman was a wake up call for me to be more conscious about the attitude I help other people feel. I know from experience that God works through us, his children, to do his work. It is our duty to help others feel God's love. In order to do this we must be able to feel that love ourselves. The only way to do that is through an attitude of gratitude.