Last week in the Bénin Cotonou Mission, was yet another splendid, miracle-filled week:
Monday, Family Night at the Stake President's house! This was the first family night that I had attended since my arrival to Calavi! The missionary couple Elder and Sister Dyson who work with our Mission President and his wife along with four other missionaries who live in another apartment consisting of Elder Gozo from the Ivory Coast, Elder Mubanga from Kinshasa, D.R. Congo, Elder Moss from Tennessee, and then Elder Colby from Sandy, Utah came to the family night as well.
On Tuesday I went on a split with one of our zone leaders named Elder Hansen from Bountiful, Utah in his secteur called Kokokodgi. We saw, spoke with and met a ton of people, investigators and recent converts and I had quite an enjoyable time working with Elder Hansen in their secteur. At one point of time during the day, as we were on our way to our fourth appointment of the day, I told E. Hansen that there was something that I had remarked and had observed from our previous lessons, about which I had decided to not say anything unless a change had been made. However, the thing that I had remarked which was really bothering me continued and it was preventing me from teaching with the Spirit due to the frustration that I had been experiencing as a result. As we taught investigators, E. Hansen kept interrupting me in mid-sentence as I would explain a certain subject or answer a question. Well, I'll be honest, it pissed me off and if it didn't stop, then I probably would have exploded. I didn't mention that part, but I was very open in explaining how I felt and then asked him as respectfully as I could to stop interrupting me during the lessons. He recognized from there what he was doing and then didn't interrupt me for the remainder of the day. Instead of interrupting, he started praying for me as I spoke and I ended up doing the same for him which enabled us to actually work very effectively together to the point that we were both edified by the Spirit and the investigators, converts and people with whom we spoke could feel the Spirit too. At the end of the day, before I went back to my apartment, we went to a local restaurant where we bought charwarmas for all the hard work that we had done.
I tell you what, this is a whole lot of marriage preparation all in the making. I just hope and pray that it'll be a lot easier to get along with my future wife, that she'll love me to death, that she'll be able to accept how stupid I can be and that she'll always find it within her to forgive me.
Sometime during the week, I lost one of my memory cards containing about three hundred very important pictures that I had taken during my last transfer in Togo. Apparently, when I took out my card to take a picture, the card had fallen out; however, I didn't find this out until I think Friday. I had searched the entire apartment, but was never able to find it. So, while we were in the secteur, my companion went to every location where I had taken pictures throughout in the week to see if we could find my card. As we searched, I had a constant prayer in my heart, asking Heavenly Father to lead and guide us to the location where I had lost my memory card.
After searching in the three following locations for over an hour, we hadn't yet found my memory card: a boutique where one of our investigators named Sr. Victoire works, the length of a road, and then at Sr. Yolande's house. However, on our way back to the apartment, it was after we had looked at the last location where I could've possibly lost it that I found my memory card!!! We went to the Stake President's house to see if I had lost it during the family night, and sure enough, it turns out that I did. The moment we arrived, without me even asking, the Stake President's wife walked into her house and came back out with the memory card in her hand asking to whom it belonged. I tell you what (once again) -- when the Lord answers prayers, which he always does, he sure doesn't disappoint.
Thank you so much for the emails, details, support, love and prayers!!! I'm always so happy to hear from you and to learn more about what happens in your lives. I've been praying for you all more frequently and whenever I do, I pray for you individually by name according to the Holy Spirit. I'll continue to pray for your individual, spiritual, physical, temporal, financial, emotional and mental welfare. I hope that everything is going well for each and every one of you in every aspect of your lives.