We just finished cleaning and mopping this family’s house and to say thank you they gave us a giant bag of mystery fruit. We were like oh thank you for this 10 pound bag of mysterious fruit :) We were walking and the bag was getting so heavy so I decided to start handing it out to people. This one indigenous lady was walking towards us and I started placing the fruit in her poncho. She asked me how much it would cost and that she didn't have any money? But I thought she said she didn`t want any so I started taking back the fruit. My comp comes running over and saying "gratis" like it`s for free and places the fruit back in this woman’s poncho. As we were walking away I asked my comp why she offered her soda. She looked at me so confused. You said "gratis" doesn't gratis mean soda I see it on all the signs with a picture of a coca cola. My companion starts laughing and says no gratis means free like if you buy a meal it comes with a free soda. So basically every time I went to buy a soda and I said gratis it was basically me asking people if they would give me a free soda. Six months strong guys don't worry I will learn this language someday :)
Yesterday I had a really high fever and spent the night hugging the toilet because I was so sick. I immediately thought about Joseph Smith in Liberty Jail and how many times they had food poisoning and then I thought about how my sister is pregnant and nausea is probably so normal for her and then I thought about how I never want to be pregnant because I hate throwing up. Then I started thinking why does God put the same trials in our life over and over again? Sometimes after we go through a trial we think well I am glad that's over with. Then 3 months later it's like your standing in front of the same mountain you just climbed and your thinking what?? Why??
Think of our lives like a video game. We spend hours trying to pass different levels but you are never going to beat a level if you play it the same way you did the time before. You have to do something different. When trials come in our life and you feel tempted to say "Seriously, I just went through this?" remember that God does all things for the good of His children. Maybe there is still something that you need to learn? "Sometimes we are forced into directions we ought to have found for ourselves."
During a lesson with a recent convert I asked her "If God was sitting right in front of you and you had one question to ask him what would you ask? She said, "I wouldn't ask him anything. I would just thank him for all the challenges that have happened in my life because through them I have found joy." Then it hit me, "A challenge handled correctly can be a blessing in your life." Maybe there is something more God wants me to learn. It's like when you watch a movie for the second time or read all the Harry Potter books again even though you've read them like 4 times and you still find something that you didn't notice the first second and third time.
This life isn't about having things but about becoming something. Who will you become through turning your life over to God?
You are never alone.
Con amor, Hermana Israelsen
PS When life gets you down remember that USA was back to back world war champs!