Lasers and turn-arounds

Last Monday we played a righteous game of Lasertag with around 40 people.  Crazy fun.  Super fast, the laser vests and guns were accurate and silly, and people were running everywhere screaming and hollering.
Around Thursday I started feeling a little down about our work.  I felt like I wasn’t helping my companion grow at all, we weren’t helping the ward, I felt disconnected from God, and it all was just kind of sitting still.  I felt like it was Satan trying to get at me in my last few weeks as a missionary, telling me all that I’ve done so far isn’t worth anything, I’m not making an effective effort on the ward, and that my mission has been a failure thus far.

I talked to my district leader about it, and he shared with me almost exactly what I’ve shared with many missionaries in my districts.  Making a huge impact that everyone will notice is not what success is.  It’s the small things, the actions of service and love that make success as a missionary.  I don’t have to solve all the problems of everyone all at once.  I just have to love and serve.  The little actions of good we do accumulate to make us into good people.  I think the personal change behind every missionary is the big act that everyone will notice, but it’s made by many, many small actions that we don’t notice.
This is true for more than just missionaries.  We are doing good when we are trying.  Just keep going, and do as Christ who “Went about doing good.”
Then came Saturday.  We had a very fun ward activity where we went to a big fancy park and ate food and had activities about spiritual topics.
We were in charge of a game, so we had the grand idea to talk about gossip.  Wonderful topic, especially for Thailand.  So we played a game where you steal taped on flags off of everyone’s shoulders while trying to keep your own on.  Then we asked how it felt.  Most of the time they answered scary, they couldn’t trust anyone, and they felt alone sometimes.  I related this to when we talk about someone badly.  Everyone else feels bad, doesn’t trust anyone, and the social cirlces of the church dissolve and die in the worst ways possible.
Then we played another game called, “Give the cookie.”
I gave them all a cookie, and they had to give it.
Afterwards I asked how they felt.  They said they felt good, like giving something helped them to gain something.  It’s true that when we speak good about others, we in turn feel good.  (This is also why saying “thank you” humbly to a compliment makes the person who said the compliment feel good)
Speaking rudely or badly about someone behind their back makes no one happy.  But rather speaking well about others helps trust grow and love to blossom in the circles of social life.  Let us love others, even when they do evil to us.  Bless those that curse us.  Let’s follow the example of Christ and forgive others for what they do to us, no matter how big of a mistake they make against us.
Through this activity with the ward, I felt wanted.  I felt like I can do some good, even though I can’t measure the success of what I’m trying to do.  I’m trying to help people love each other.  I can’t put a number to that.
In the end, I was reminded of what I was supposed to be doing.  I love the Savior, for He has rescued me.  I love you all, until next time, adios.
-Elder Elliot Mayo