Sunday, June 26, 2016 9:50pm-3:50pm CST
There are no words to adequately say THANK YOU to the Lord for His care and protection over the past 10 days. We have had a few problems with minor health issues but nothing of significance. We have been completely safe on roads that would boggle your mind; enjoyed wonderful accommodations and great food. We have had great fellowship within the team and with our Christian brothers and sisters. The Lord also led us to teach the gospel to 105 and witness the new births of 52! We ask that you keep the following in prayer;
- Those who rejected the Word for whatever reason. Our prayer is that the seed that was sown will one day bear fruit before it is too late.
- The local congregations who will work with the new babies. A great deal of nurturing will need to take place.
- Those who gave their lives to the Lord. I was talking with Kevin this afternoon and I am not naïve; I am aware that all who were baptized were not serious. At least, that Is the probability. I would love to be a false prophet regarding that thought. At any rate; we pray they will grow in their walk with the Lord.
We are now in travel mode. Starting tonight we are packing and will load at 6:30 in the morning. Our plan is to arrive in Douala no later than 11. The following day, Lord willing, we will fly out late that night to Paris and have a 90-minute window to get to our next plane. 10 hours to Atlanta and 2 to Dallas. I just got tired thinking about it! Let me try and remember the day. My alarm has been set for 6:52 each morning and don’t ask me how I came up with that time. Once more I slept well and most of the guys did. However, there is a nightclub in the hotel and evidently they play really loud music. I wouldn’t know as I can sleep through a tornado. Went down to breakfast and two days ago I just had bread, butter and jelly. Yesterday I had bread and butter (the jelly was finished) and today I just had bread as the butter was finished. Chicken just does not appeal to me in the morning. We received our laundry back and it was dry. We have had our laundry done 3 times and only once did some of it come back a bit damp. That is good for the rainy season. Mathias came to pick me and was on time. It is only 10 minutes to the church hall and while some of the road is not great, it is not all that bad. I did wear my boots and was glad because when I went to the baptisms I needed them. We started with a bunch of songs and I could not hear myself. I do not have a soft voice but they had some really strong voices. I taught both Bible class and sermon. The worship was very uplifting. After worship I taught 3 prospects. Two of them were immersed and I want to briefly talk about all three. Honorine is a young woman who was hard to ‘read’. At times she seemed very focused but at other times not as much. Emilie was an old woman who was baptized. Her son became a Christian a few years ago and has been very faithful. He has been working on her for a long time and today she gave her life to Christ. My limited experience in evangelism is that older people are very difficult to reach. By the time you get a good number of years on you; change does not come easily. We also taught and baptized a 16-year-old named Nadia. I am concerned about her because she is only visiting this area while school is out. There is no congregation where she lives so it will be a challenge. I gave her Jean Claude’s address and we hope to get her some WBS material that will help her and allow her to reach out to her friends. You can see our new sisters below. Also you can see that the worship hall was packed this morning. We went by machine to the ‘baptistery’. There were 8 of us but only 2 machines. 6 rode on ahead while I and a sister named Margaret began to trek. After a short while Mathias came back and picked us. Yesterday there was a man bathing so we had to wait but today there were only 2 men washing their machines so there was no conflict. It was such a blessing to watch these two women become our sisters. Mathias then took me back to the hotel. I started packing and getting as many things out of the way as possible. We had supper at 5 and as usual, it was 30 minutes late but we are not complaining because the food was delicious and the service great! We took a team picture which I will post tomorrow. I took my last shower here and will Skype Linda soon.
The way our brethren speak is quite fascinating. For example:
- When the brother was praying for me before I spoke he said: Bless him as he dishes us your Word.
- When they want to say “the Bible says” they say: The Bible talk say.
- When Mathias was baptizing Nadia and was instructing her to hold her nose so water would not flow in he said: lock your nose.
- Most of the smaller congregations have multiple song books. When the song leader is announcing the song he will give both or all 3 book numbers. For example, in Kossala they have Songs of Faith and Praise, Songs of the Church and Great Songs of the Church. I guess Great Songs of the Church is the new, improved edition!
- I mentioned Emilie above. When I asked her age she did not know. That is not uncommon in the village over here or with all women in America over the age of 50! Teresa Blaisdell is still only 46 but in 4 short years she won’t know her age!
- I wish I had had a Fit Bit for tonight only. It would be interesting to know how many steps I have taken as I have been burning up the hallways going from place to place.
- I want you to look at the size of the chicken sandwich Bryan ordered tonight. You can see him in the background to get some perspective of how HUGE this sandwich was. Also, that is a LARGE plate that the sandwich overlaps.
- I had misunderstood Vincent last night. Esli was not admitted to the hospital. He is doing better today but Vincent is going to take him to the doctor to check him out. Please continue to pray for him.
- The percentage of converts is always high but this year it was especially high. The reason is because the churches did a GREAT job of preparation. If we were ‘door-knocking’ our numbers would be dramatically reduced.
We have been blessed from start to finish and know that our good God has been protecting us. We thank you for each thought and prayer on our behalf. Lord willing, I will send my next to last howdy from Douala tomorrow.