Wednesday, November 5, 2014

A Tight Squeeze - November 4, 2014

Yes, I am a day late but I am doing well and that is what counts. Yesterday (Monday) was quite the day.

Sunday night the whole Gulu zone came down and stayed in our apartment which made the total number of people 18! It was a little tight. Getting all of the Elders into our house and situated to spend the night kept us up until around midnight. I had to wake up at 3:30 am and practically throw my companion in the car to pick up the other elders in the Lira zone so we could all travel together for a meeting with an Area Seventy (Elder Ellis in the southeast region of Africa).

After picking up the Lira Elders, I dropped them at our house and went to the private taxi driver’s home so that he could get his large van to help transport all of us to the meeting with Elder Ellis. He then followed me back to our house. When we got there, we started packing missionaries into vehicles. We put 12 people in the taxi (they are big and spacious), five in the Gulu truck and then five in our truck. Elders Levitt, Whitworth, Bakari, Assimwe and I were in our truck.

We began our drive to Mbale at about 5 am! I had managed to get all that done—eat breakfast, shower, pick up the Lira Elders, and get the taxi driver in an hour and half. Normally, the drive to Mbale is about four hours. About three quarters of the way there, we hit an area where a section of the road had speed bumps every 20 feet!! This lasted for five miles. This led to a lot of upset stomachs and headaches throughout the rest of the journey.

After tackling the speed bumps, we continued on and eventually arrived about 10:30 a.m. We had a great meeting with Elder Ellis until about 2:30 p.m. He talked about a lot of different things. One of the things that impressed me was the need to pray for miracles in our life and then express gratitude when they come to pass. It was a pretty awesome meeting. The whole purpose of the meeting was to learn how to recognize the Spirit. He was a great speaker and REALLY knew his scriptures.

After the meeting, we had lunch and piled back into the car to drive back. By this point, I was very tired of driving and the thought of getting back in that driver’s seat was just not appealing. We reached Lira at about 8:30 pm. We were all very hungry. We went to a small restaurant and asked how long it would take to prepare the food because we needed to be home very soon.

The owner smiled and said thirty minutes. We were relieved and told him that would not be a problem. Well an hour and fifteen minutes later our food was ready! By this time, we were all wiped out. We asked him to pack the food to go. The Gulu and Lira Elders went to our house, ate their food in their make-shift beds and then crashed! Now you know why I didn't email yesterday—I was driving across the country. Ha ha ha!

Things with the work are pretty exciting! (Especially with Christine). We have seen Christine take the initiative in preparing for her baptism (which is this coming week). In the past, she would wait for Kalisto or us to make appointments. However last week she made the arrangements.
When we met with them some really great things happened. She told us how she and Kalisto have been praying and reading the scriptures together every single night. (I mentioned this in the last letter.) BUT she told us how this has strengthened her testimony of the gospel of Christ. They both shared their feelings about what has happened to their family since Kalisto joined the church. They had both noticed a change in their home. But ever since Christine has committed to be baptized the home has been filled with peace, happiness and joy. I felt so good! To see and hear from the family how the gospel has really changed their lives was such a wonderful reward!

We are still working with the other people that I usually write about. We are also working with a woman named Margaret. They are all doing very well.

A new person that we started teaching is Johnathan. He works for the Baroda bank and is a smart guy. Apparently a long time ago, Elder Sithole and I opened a gate for him and he was really impressed by that small act. When we were contacting, he let us share with him. (I do not remember this simple thing but it was truly a miracle!) He came to church this week and it was really awesome to have him around. He seemed to enjoy church. We will have to see how it all goes. It is too early to say.

Sorry for not emailing yesterday.

Have a good one!

Elder Bitter

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