So, I learned an important lesson this week about cleanliness. You have to be clean. Filth can sap your desire to live.
We received a referral to visit and teach a young-ish man and his aged mother. We stopped by to find out about them and they weren't home... or at least the son wasn't home. We met the neighbors and they all complained about the stench. And it stank. We returned another day and found them at home and it was just horrid. They have 2 dogs and 2 cats and the son wasn't taking care of anybody or anything. His mom, Dona Maria, is 79 years old. The first time we went in she could barely talk. She was laying on the couch wrapped up in a blanket. She looked mostly dead. She couldn't sit up by herself... eat or drink by herself... she was using diapers. So... to make a long story short, we got some Irmãs in our ward to come help us clean the house, and we rid the house of the wretched stench. Mostly, anyway. We killed millions of daddy long-legs and chased down some cock-roaches. It was really quite horrid. Then the Irmãs went back the next day and dyed Dona Maria's hair and painted her fingernails and gave her a hair cut.
Yesterday we went back to finally teach them about the Restoration and stuff, and Dona Maria is completely different. She was sitting on the couch. She can't stop chatting. She held and patted our hands. She was walking with a little bit of help and even went to the bathroom all by herself. You have to learn how to clean. I may not know how to clean very well, yet, but my desire to learn is growing. I will not live in filth. Clutter, perhaps. But not filth.
We felt so good all day yesterday to know that we made a difference in someone's life. And I have renewed desire to serve when I get home. 4 Irmãs helped us clean the house. They dropped everything and helped for 6 hours one day, all day the next day, and the following day returned for a birthday party. And went back the next week. They were so willing to serve. It's amazing. I want to grow up to be like them.