There has been some discussion in our house about what movies Nathan might like to watch when he gets home. How To Train Your Dragon II and Frozen of course are at the top of the list, but one I thought about Nathan while I was watching it is 42: The Jackie Robinson Story. Without giving anything away for those of you who haven’t seen it: I love the story of how one man’s actions made such a difference and he did so in a quiet manner. I think this quote from Jackie Robinson says it all: “The measure of a life is not what that life accomplishes but rather the impact that life has on others.”
Last week I asked Nathan what he most wanted to take home from his mission. Here is what he had to say: “We had lessons set up last night and we had a member come out with us from 5 – 9 pm. It was a huge commitment. This guy is getting married in 2 1/2 weeks and his father just passed away a few months ago. He is one of my favorite people in the ward – his name is Aaron. He is really humble and soft-spoken. . . I think that is what I like about the singles ward 0 that I can see returned missionaries and it is pretty easy to tell how much their mission affected them. It definitely helps create a better vision for myself. Aaron and his home teaching companion invited us to dinner with them and this girl from the ward. She is one of the older members of the ward but when we were having dinner they were just treating her like they would any of their friends . . . I am sure it went a long way for her. Mom asked what I wanted to take home from my mission – I think just that focus on individual people. I think that is for sure the most valuable thing I have learned is how much it means to someone when they know you care.”
When I think about the people who have the biggest impact on me, it wasn’t their accomplishments that guided and directed me. It was the belief they had in me. They let me know through words and actions that I mattered to them. Jesus Christ is our greatest example. He was surrounded by multitudes and spoke to thousands but he cared for each individual. We might not all be Jackie Robinsons but we can make a difference – even if it is to one person.