I went on an exchange with a new arrival missionary a couple weeks ago. This was Elder Stevenson's (the Presiding Bishop's son) first exchange. Well, he had quite the experience... We went to a secondary area, and unfortunately, we got on the wrong train going back. We all too late realized our mistake, and got off on a creepy train platform in Miaoli. We had left our mission boundaries! We waited around for a good hour until a southbound train came by. That was the first time I had ever left the mission. Elder Stevenson thanked me for making his first exchange so memorable.
We had a fantastic Zone Training Meeting this week. They talked about consecration. They closed the meeting with a talk by Elder Holland, which I invite you to watch. http://bcove.me/2tsb3lxi It is seriously one of the best talks I have ever heard, and after it was over I felt like I needed to step it up. My mission has been fantastic for me because it continually pushes me to be a better person and work harder.
Of course, it has been all too easy for me to compare myself to others as I try to improve. Elder Terry, a departing missionary, shared with us the following poem:
"No one can be a better me than me.
If you try to be better than me, I'll break your leg.
Now try to be a better me with a broken leg."
In the end, God does not care where you've been. All He cares about is where you are right now, and what you will do going forward. My accomplishments don't have to be any bigger than a great leader of history. In God's eyes, the street sweeper is just as important and just as special as a prophet. The street sweeper doesn't get any less privileges than the prophet; we are all His children, and heirs to all that He has. As long as we remain faithful in our respective capacities, we can obtain eternal life and salvation in God's kingdom.
Last but not least, while I was at a 7-Eleven making phone calls, some lady randomly gave us rice pudding, told us "Happy New Year!", and drove away. Weird. But super cool. I felt so happy after that, and it made me really realize the power of random acts of kindness.
Hope you have a wonderful week, and a happy Valentine's day!
“We got this Buddhist calander, and we saw this familiar picture of a building inside...”