Saturday, August 24, 2013

August 12, 2013

Family and friends,

Hello! You haven't forgotten me! Thanks!!

 I have had such an up and down week, but it has probably been one of my most fruitful as far as my learning and growth goes.  I don't have a whole heck of a lot of time but here is some of what happened.

Aug 5
Athi River boys came with us to email.  We went to Pork City for lunch (my favorite!) and then emailed for a while.  Got the most AWESOME haircut from a DRC refugee.

Aug 6 - BEST DAY EVAAAAAAA and best part is it comes every year!!
My BIRTHDAY!!!!!  The only bad part was this investigatorwho said "Dick!  Happy birthday!  When are you getting married?"  I told him 22 or 23.  He said "To how many women?"  So that kind of killed the mood.  But afterward we went to the Sri Lankans and they made me the sweetest birthday cake!  I am sorry, but the computer I am on this week does not have the capacity to upload pictures, so once again you
will have to wait until next week.  But I promise the wait is worth it.  Seriously, an awesome cake.  But at my birthday party at their place I had the opportunity to share a spiritual thought with their family, the Athi elders, and Joseph Matwale, a RM of about 10 weeks.I didn't know exactly what I was going to say at first, but I shared this POWERFUL spiritual thought on prayer.  I had no idea where the words were coming from  (the Spirit, obviously) but they were so wonderful and even though not everyone in the room spoke Southernese,
I know they could feel what I felt.  I think I even made one or two of the Sri Lankans cry.
Birthday party with other Elders and Sri Lankan friends

Elder Ledwaba and a beautiful birthday cake!

Aug 7
I got the 2013 edition of the scriptures!  WOOOOOOO!  Happy birthday to me!  They are sweet.  I mean, they say the same thing, but they are still great.  I was talking to Sister Hicken, the mission president's wife, in the office today and we were talking about how crazy it is here.  We agreed that no matter how many pictures we take or how elaborate our words are, it is impossible for anyone to comprehend how hot, how hard, how busy, chill, crazy, difficult, and downright different it is here without them experiencing it themselves.  So it is a blessing to be here.

Aug 9
I woke up at 3:30 and couldn't go back to sleep...  So it was a long long day...  New favorite scripture that my mom showed me - Helaman 6:37 - The Gadianton Robbers had the gospel preached among them until
they were destroyed.  The Nephites didn't slay them, they converted them to destruction.

Aug 10
Day 3 of no soap/shampoo.  I have been taking water showers for a while.  It is starting to become  miserable.  I am starting to live the African way.  Also, I don't know if all y'all know, but when you "wash
your hands" for a meal, the host just brings you some water and pours it on your hands.  So it basically just rubs the germs around rather than killing them.  Thankfully, I am set apart so the Lord protects me.

Aug 11
So a few things.  For one, after church all the kids ran to the sacrament table to eat the leftover bread.  I say "Hapana" and all of a sudden I'm the bad guy.  I said no because just last week the Bishop was counseled to not let the kids eat the bread.  So then another brother comes and he starts giving the bread to them.  I ask him what is he doing?  He straight up looked at me in his manliest glare possible and said "I know it's not allowed, but here they do it."  Say what???  Well earlier in the week I heard the term "This is Africa" which means that some church rules just don't matter because it is different in Africa.  It is something that is not true,
but some people use the excuse. I also ate so much fish today.  We went to our friends house and she fed us ugali and sugarcane and the best best best fish.  Today I have had very little time to email because the power has gone out twice already.

Thank you so much for all of the birthday wishes.  Seriously, I loved them :)  I love hearing about things going on back home.  Everyone stay wonderful!


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