Wow! This week has had some ups and downs!
We met this woman the other day. She grew up in New York and is basically in love with the United States. She asked me to write the national anthem for her, haha. But she is in a really dark place right now. She is really unhappy and really alone. Many of her family members have died; her husband is mute; he beat her in the past; she feels really, really alone. Right now, her dog is sick with kidney failure and when we were with here she was inconsolable. She said that she doesn’t have anyone and that this dog is her only company. But the saddest thing of all is that she refuses to turn to the Lord. We asked if we could say a prayer for her dog; but she doesn’t want anything to do with God. She says that she tried praying in the past, but nothing happened. Her heart was so closed that it was useless trying to help her be happy. I asked her are you happy right now? Do you want to be happy? I told her to try opening her heart to the Lord; but she did not want any of it. With a really heavy heart, we left her in her misery.
This is not the first time, nor the last that I will meet people who choose to be sad. At times I feel inadequate to help them; because in comparison, my life has been relatively easy. They don’t want to hear what I have to say about the Atonement; because they feel that they know more about life than I do. In a sense this is true, and sometimes I wonder if I would be the same in their position. I just have such a strong desire to help them; it makes me so sad when they won’t even try.
I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately. These people are deep in the depths of Satan’s snare. They aren’t bad people; they’re just deeply unhappy and the ingredient missing in their lives is hope. I have realized how important hope is in this life. In Alma 32, we learn that hope is faith, and Faith is the first principle of the gospel. I’ve worked out that the ingredients for happiness are this:
- We need to have a desire to be happy. Everything starts with desire.
- We need to have hope that we can be happy. If we don’t believe that we can be happy we won’t ever be happy.
- We need to Act. We need to put our hopes and dreams into fruition by our own labors. Being happy is a goal, just the same as any other goal.
- Read scriptures
- Go to church
- Obey the commandments
- We need to recognize our blessings. We need to have an attitude of gratitude to open our hearts to the Lord. Most importantly, we need to recognize the blessings of the atonement.
Anyone on this planet can be happy if they do these things. Sadly, very few actually will.
I have decided that it is not up to me to be sad about this; but to do my work and help as many people as will listen and be happy for those few who do accept our message.
One of the sweet things that happened this week was our less active, Hironette, came to church and taught with us. I am so happy for the decision that she made.
Sister Da Luz has 9 months in the mission! We celebrated with cake:)
Our conference in Coimbra was neat. Coimbra is a really cool city and it was good to see the Fluckigers for the last time.
I love you all!