Sunday, June 14, 2015

New iPads and Other First World Problems - Letter to Mom - 30 March, 2015

Dear Mother,

Have you ever heard rants about first world problems? It is kind of sad, but it really opens your eyes to how weak and meaningless our complaining is. Are you ready for some of the first world problems that I have experienced in Japan? (Read this in as whiny of a voice as possible, and it will be really funny....I hope ;) or just read in my voice.....or perhaps Kronk's voice....something you enjoy. ;) haha)

First world Problem: We finished the testing program for our iPads being the only missions (Tokyo as well) internationally. And had to get NEW iPads! Can you believe it? We had to set them up, and take time, and it even has more storage. But, I lost all of my pictures to the cloud and am not sure how to get them (help dad!! haha).

First world Problem: I went on splits with a traveling AP and used the other one's bike. His is an American bike with disc brakes, so I almost died because Japanese bikes have their brakes switched (I pulled sharply on the front tire....with disc brakes....don't worry, nobody was seriously injured. :) haha)

First World Problem: We were using too many electrical devices so the breaker flipped and I had to wait to turn back on the shower to exactly 40 degress celsius (We choose to the degree how hot our showers are! Crazy huh?)

First World Problem: We ran out of rice so we had to eat the bread that ward members give to us.

We will now stop the first world problems. I want you to think about the times that maybe you have complained about similar things. For example, how many times did we complain about our broken Air Conditioning, forcing us to go downstairs and use fans? How many times do we complain that we don't have food, when in reality what we mean is we don't have the food that we want? How many times do we complain that the chord to our computer is all the way across the room, and we have to stand up and get it, and then move positions to get close enough to the outlet in the wall so that we can charge it while we are using it? How many times do we complain that we have to wash the hand dishes or clean the kitchen?

When we look at the blessings instead, we get quite a change in perspective: When our air conditioner broke, I was so grateful that we could go to our cool basement. I was also grateful that we had extra fans that we could blow. I was also grateful that we even have
electricity. I was so grateful that we had enough wheat to make bread. It was so fun to get closer to mom while we made it, and it was delicious to eat after! I also loved eating those vegetables and salad that Ammon prepared for dinner. I am so grateful that Dad has a nice job, supplying us with all that we could ever want as far as technology goes. I am so grateful we have electricity to supply our home with light and warmth. I am so grateful that we have nice couches and seats to sit on while I use the computer, and I am grateful that we have food that makes our kitchen dirty, as well as the appliances that need cleaning, and all of those things.

So, what happened there? What takes a "first world problem" to a blessing? The answer is a change in perspective. Particularly in this case, living in gratitude as opposed to living in greed. I encourage you to live in gratitude all of your life.

This week was way good. Like I mentioned before, I got to go on splits with one of the traveling AP's and it was so good. He is an incredible missionary.

Overall it was so good! I love you, mom! (This is where my iPad died. Haha) Take care! Love ya! <3 <3

Love, Elder Livingston

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