Sickness is in the air down here in San Juan and every moment of health that I have is another blessing I am able to count. Everybody and their dog is getting sick (the Dogs especially, you can count the tumors that dangle off their body...it´s pretty gross), from my companion to the other companionship in San Juan (They´re a pair of Hermanas and I spent a good 6 hours in the Hospital because one of them had a pretty hardcore asthma attack and had to go home...so now Elder Hernandez and I are the only Missionaries this side of the mountain for a good...25 miles...fun). The world could do with some recuperation and a nice bowl of Chicken Soup is just what the doctor ordered...or if you´re here it´s Chicken FOOT Soup and it leaves a weird, metallic aftertaste in your mouth.
So here´s my custom brew, Chicken Soup for the Salvation of Souls: A Guide on how to get happy and stay that way.
1. Appreciate More, Quibble Less.
My first ride on the Buses here in Guatemala was a testament to how different this country is from the United States. The best way to describe it is the cheapest roller coaster that money can buy. You get packed into a painted up School Bus, three to a seat and no room to breathe, as you careen down the mountain face, whipping past the greenery and neighborhoods at speeds that defy explanation. All the while, people walk up and down the aisles asking for your money, selling peanuts and other goods as the speakers blare songs in your ear that...aren´t exactly ¨Mission Appropriate¨
...sounds fun, right?
But if we´re going to appreciate more and quibble less, we focus more on the people, do some contacting and say a prayer of thanks for the chance to sit down for a while.
The world could do with more appreciation!
2. Memorize a Hymn...and sing it to yourself
In Doctrine and Covenants Section 25 we read that ¨The song of the righteous is a prayer unto me and shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.¨ Every song in the Hymn book is both spiritually and emotionally uplifting, ponder the poetry of their lyrics!
Whenever you feel sad remind yourself that you ¨are a child of God¨ and that ¨Families can be together forever!¨ A good suggestion for a ¨Pick me up Hymn¨is ¨There is Sunshine in my Soul Today,¨ or ¨Count Your Blessings¨
3. Get Outta the Past and Attach to Today
When Christ comes to the Americas in 3rd Nephi, he tells them that ¨Old Things are done away and all things have become new¨ (3Nephi 12: 47). Memories are great, in a way they´re the heart of your brain, if that makes any sense....but if we attach ourselves to the past too much we forget to live in the TODAY.
A wise turtle in a Dreamworks movie once said, ¨Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery but today is a gift, that´s why it´s called the present!¨
4. Look forward to something
Always have a way point, a dream or a goal to anticipate. Whenever you feel down you can always know that something great is on the horizon and feel rejuvenated.
Langston Huges puts it best when he said:
¨Hold fast to dreams, for when dreams die
Life is a broken winged-bird that cannot fly
Hold fast to dreams for when dreams go
Life is a barren field, frozen with snow¨
If your way point is the next PDay or that hour you have before you go to sleep at night to do whatever you want...so be it.
And that´s my philosophy for the week! Haha, hope all is well, I´m doing great!