We have some really wonderful people that we are teaching right now. On Saturday we expect to have two baptisms, which is very exciting. It's the family of one of the members. They are really nice people. Their names are Rosaly and Juditte. They are from Southern Madagascar. There isn't a church there so they didn't get baptized with the rest of their family. Also, we are teaching two new families. One really young couple who are both studying to become lawyers, and an older man and his wife.
So you probably saw that last week I went to a little lemur park. It was super fun. Shhh!, but we paid the guards to let us go in and hold the lemurs. Very worth it if I do say so myself. They are so soft. Lemurs are exactly as awesome as you would hope and want them to be. They're super friendly and really smart. I have finally done the thing that everyone has asked me about since I found out I was going to Madagascar... have you seen any lemurs?
Lastly, today I would like to share a little spiritual thought. It is something I was thinking about earlier today on forgiving others. It's a little bit firey, but I think it gets the point across. I was thinking about something that had happened in the past that some people felt wasn't fair. I think it is necessary for us to recall that this life is not fair in one very specific way. If we think of something unfair as defined by being against what is just or breaking from the cause and effect axiom, then the most unfair thing to ever happen was the atonement. There has only been one person who deserved to be completely without misery. Jesus Christ, our Savior, was not only the perfect man, he was the only one whose life was perfectly unfair. He did nothing wrong, and yet he bore the brunt of all evil ever to exist. The reality is that this life is brutally fair to us. It reminds me of a wonderful story by C.S. Lewis. In the story, a man dies and goes to hell (a cold dark city). From there he must take a bus to heaven. There are many people from hell with him on the bus. They are all thinking that they will enjoy heaven more. But what happens when they get there... they don't like it. They prefer hell because their mindsets, for various reasons, are damned. One man in particular arrives in heaven, not to fall into the merciful arms of Christ's infinite atonement, but to claim his "rights", what's "due to him". This man inevitably returned back to hell by his own choice because heaven was not what he had expected. I assert that anything outside of the atonement is an absence of progression. God doesn't want to us to stop progressing, it's our choice. Also, we know that this life is not an accident and our actions are not simply weights placed opposing one another on the scale of eternity. This life is a journey, a time for us to live and grow. Nothing is fair, so we should stop focusing on it. Our salvation isn't fair, but it is in accordance with the great plan of happiness that we would receive experiences and grow. That we would ultimately learn to follow Christ with total faith. If we focus our whole lives on what's fair or not fair, then we are damned. If we give ourselves over to mercy by following the commandments and choosing to be obedient at all times, if we realize that life is a time of growth and stop refusing to forgive one another for the petty things that have happened in our lives, then we can truly gain joy in this life or the next. Give up worrying about what you are owed. Have faith, repent, and endure to the end. That is the price that must be paid, what is fair, what we deserve. I love you all very much and hope you have a great week!