Thursday, February 18, 2016 7:55pm-12:55pm CST
Let me begin with some good news. I told you yesterday of the two brothers who were causing a fair amount of trouble in my class. One of them is a young convert who only left the Pentecostal faith 3 months ago. We all understand (I think I mentioned this yesterday) that doctrines that you have held for a long time do not automatically evaporate once you enter the Lord’s Church. After the class last night two brothers who I highly respect studied further with him and made great progress. One of the difficulties in this culture is that people tend to shout when there is a disagreement. One thing I pointed out in my class today is that we need to be kind, loving and gentle with those that we hope to instruct in the way of the Lord. I was very happy to hear that things went well last night and today he did not cause any trouble whatsoever.
We had an excellent day. 35 men vs 38 last year; 26 women vs 37 last year and 45 in the afternoon vs 47 last year. Slept well again and did routine stuff to prepare for the day. Went down to give the girls their candy but they were late so we climbed our machines and were off to the hall. Arrived about 10 minutes early and Ricardo was able to start on time. I was able to listen to the first hour and then I dutifully did my ‘gopher work’. Took a machine to the hotel and gave the sisters their candy and also bought them a Coke. It galls the brothers that I do that and it brings me great joy. I also went over the evaluation sheets and took the picture that you see on the right below. Had to get something from my room. That, of course, forced (I had no choice) me to drink a nice cold Coke Light. While I was downing it I was feeling sorry for my poor brothers who were languishing in Ricardo’s class. Got back and was able to hear the last hour. He is such a good teacher and communicates so well. Julien and Martin then took us back to the hotel. Today we ate in the restaurant and had some GREAT spaghetti. Thought I was at Olive Garden. Well, almost. We sat downstairs and had a good conversation. One of the blessings of both the seminar and campaigns is the fellowship with both our Cameroonian brethren as well as each other. Came back to my room and did a couple of things and then hustled back to the hall. I felt good about my class today and believe it has been worthwhile. Mid-way through a photographer came and we had a shot in which we will have a copy produced for each participant. The one on the left below was taken by the photographer as he helped a number of us in taking pictures so we could be in the shot. Climbed our machines back and I have been working ever since I got here with the exception of that nice cold shower. When it first hits there is a jolt but very soon thereafter it is so pleasant. I have downloaded all of my pictures. And it will still be a couple of hours before I can Skype with Charlie Brown and Grandma.
- Martin’s wife is in the ladies’ class and when he picked me he said that I gave the ladies candies. I said yes and he said; you cheat on us which pleased me to no end.
- The translation is much trickier here than in Kumba because with Pidgeon, you understand it and can stop your interpreter if they did not get you well. In French, that is simply not the case. Now, with Jean Claude I don’t worry at all but with others you hope they are conveying the message. Fortunately, Jean Claude and a few others correct from time to time but it interrupts your flow as a teacher.
- The lifter at the hotel has been down for 4 or 5 days. Beatrice, the manager, said that she wants me to make sport which is her way of saying; we are going to help you exercise. I am just thankful we are on the second floor instead of the 4th!
- When I went to the women’s class this morning they pointed to a barrier and there was a little kid hiding there. When he saw me he ran for the hills.
- I am glad that I know this part of Douala. Yesterday, we were traveling and my machine guy got separated from Jean Claude but I was able to tell him when to go left and when to go right.
- I told you in October (maybe even on this trip) that Mary is teaching Martin to read. I had thought that he had a little bit of schooling but he has never been to school and could not even write his name. He is enthusiastically enjoying the seminar and is using the English material.
- Coming back for lunch it was so cool. We came up on a red light (a red rose has nothing on this light) and two vehicles that were dutifully stopped. Martin split them perfectly and off we went.
- There was one time today when Martin actually stopped at a red light and I noticed something really neat. They have lights for pedestrians in which there is a little green man who is walking when it is OK for you to walk. When it comes close for the red man to come on the little green man starts to walk more quickly.
- I will give Martin credit; one time today he gave some thought to stopping at a red light. They do say it is the thought that counts. Not sure that would work on a policeman but who knows.
One day to go and the 18th seminar is in the books. Things have gone smoothly and we thank you for every prayer.