Tuesday, October 07, 2014

October 6, 2014

Jacob was transferred last week to Kyambeke, which is 14 hours east of where he was. He is now in "the bush" and loves it!  Below is a message from him.  

Take care, 

I live midway up a "hill."  It is more like a small mountian.  We climb up and down mountains all day to visit people.  To get to Ilima, a place we have to go often, we walk along an eight inch path, and at some parts jump over ditches that lead to the fifty-foot ravine down below.  And if I walk too far right of the path, down I go.  It is a hike every day!  It is really neat because this is about as far as you can get from the North Carolina Raleigh mission.  So yesterday we hiked up up up up up (it seems like everyone that has been baptized lives at the TOP of the hill that they are on) to see a member, and
what do you know, she wasn't there.  She came within the next half-hour, though, which was nice.  On the way home it started pouring so we started running.  It wasn't bad because we saw a grand total of five people plus some kids on the way home.  I'd be surprised if you told me that a thousand people lived within four square miles of me. But I ran down that narrow path and I was sure to be careful on the especially dangerous parts :).

We take a bus once per month to go to Machakos, which has the closest grocery store.  It takes an hour and a half to reach pavement, then another two and a half hours to get to town.  Four hours one way to buy bread. Nevermind the lack of washing machines. Sometimes we just plain don't have water!

Have you heard the poem THE CALLING by Michael T. Hurst?  Well, here it is.  It is a good one to read and learn.

Hyrum's brother, in the morning
Ere the sun caused cock to crow,
Arose from sleep and lit a candle
And read the Bible in its glow.
His young heart was deeply troubled,
Greatly burdened by his plight,
For he wondered, more than most men,
Which of all the sects was right.
Then from James a partial answer
Struck his mind like hammer blows
And drove itself into his bosom:
"Ask of God," said ancient prose.

From the cabin, through the barnyard
Strode the lad with easy grace.
Past the plowed fields, newly seeded,
To a predetermined place.
Nestled deep in yonder forest,
Cuddled in a womb of green,
Looking back and all around him,
Only shadows; he's unseen.
Filtered through the shimmering treetops,
Morning sunlight gilt the youth,
And kneeling humbly in its aura,
Joseph prayed to learn the truth.

Suddenly, bright skies were blackened.
A great thick darkness gathered 'round
While evil powers, frenzied, fighting,
Bound the lad and stopped his sound.
Never yet such awesome power,
Never visciousness so real,
Never loomed such great destruction
As the lad was caused to feel.
Urgent prayer was nigh abandoned,
Almost squelched by evil might,
When rescue came in one bright instant:
Blackness was dispelled by light.

What a shaft of glorious brilliance
Blessed the forest there that day
As all eternity rang an answer
To the boy who went to pray.
Flee, the denizens of darkness,
From the presence of a Greater One,
One whose sacred luminescence
Dims the glory of the sun.
Standing tall in might and glory
In the air, o'er forest sod,
Above him speaking, introducing,
Joseph saw the face of God.

God the Father, Great Eternal,
Glorious, yet much like man,
Calling once again a prophet
To reveal the gospel plan.
God the Father, Great Eternal,
With His own Beloved Son,
Son and Sire both stood together,
Glory, countenance, all as one.
"Joseph, this is my Beloved.
Hear Him," and so Joseph heard
God's predicted declaration
Of men's departure from His word.

"Joseph!" T'was the voice of thunder,
Yet was kind and filled his soul
As he listened to the Firstborn
Who revealed to him his role.
For the church of old had fallen,
Plunged to darkness from its light;
But, with guidance from the heavens,
Morn could break upon the night.
Morn, as when the rosy day-dawn,
Maturing, breaks exuberant ray,
And the shouting voice of sunlight,
Conquering, holds the night at bay.

Thus the light the Lord was giving;
Guidance was for years ahead;
Knowledge to restore salvation
For the living and the dead.
Joseph faced long years of struggle;
Years of toil and prayer and tears;
Years of temples, priesthoods, prisons,
Translations, visions, joys, and fears;
Years of Kirtland, Nauvoo, Carthage,
Persecution; hell's fires fed;
Ere he's seen full forty seasons,
Years that leave young Joseph dead.

But now he felt exhilaration,
Wonder, reverence, worship, awe.
All his life would be a witness
To the truth of what he saw.
Then the vision, closing, left him
Lying, limpid, in the wood.
Having heard God's great assignment
He would do it, as he should.
Then rising, moving through the shadows,
Joseph stepped into the sun
And a prophet walked the pathways
Where a little boy had run.

Elder Dick