Thursday, February 14, 2019 9:00pm – 2:00pm CST
If you are married; it is my prayer that you believe that your husband/wife is the best in the world. If you do, you are delusional because there is only one best and that is my darling bride. Those who know me will oftentimes agree that that must be the case, you see, because they will wonder how a saint like Linda could put up with a slob like me. The last time that Linda and I were together on Valentine’s Day was 1987 as I have been in Africa each February beginning in 1988. She will receive flowers today and has already received a necklace that she likes. I also sent her an arrangement of Edibles which is some kind of fruit that is shaped into flowers or some such nonsense! At any rate; she is worth far more than I could ever give her.
I have written the following (or similar words) in past Howdys. If you have not figgered out that I am not creative in my writing; you must not be able to recognize creativity when you see it. Not only do I repeat myself from one Howdy to the next on a particular trip but I may have said the same thing 8 times in different journeys. I do not have the writing ability of Bob Deister but I can write as well as Charlie Brown (I think). Since he is only 10 years old, I am not sure that is saying much about my skills. At any rate; we had another great day which is par for the course. Don had 39 in his class; Louise had 33 and I had 75. I am happy that I have been a false prophet as the attendance has climbed each day since Tuesday. The value of a particular seminar cannot be judged when it is finished. One thing I know from looking at the first seminar in 1999 to now; growth is taking place. Now; don’t email and tell me that what I am fixin to say has been stated in previous seminar howdys because I actually know that this is repeat. In II Peter 1:3-11 the apostle will give some good and basic teachings which they had heard before. He then will speak of “reminding” them in verse 12. I say that to say this: it is my contention that numerical growth cannot take place unless it is preceded by spiritual growth. Now, this can get tricky and here is what I mean. When I was a kid, I remember the preacher standing before us in either late December or early January and saying: “well, we didn’t grow much numerically last year but we grew spiritually”. As an adult I think that was code for: we didn’t grow but we don’t want to admit it. Having said that; we can evangelize (which is good) and baptize (which is good) but if we fail to disciple and nurture the new converts; little numerical growth will take place. I believe that for much of the church in Cameroon; they are still getting their ‘sea legs’ when it comes to not only a knowledge of the Word but a daily walk with the Lord. I have stated on many occasions that I believe that what we are doing is foundation work and I can see the foundation growing stronger and stronger. It still has a long way to go but when I look at the church in America, many of our congregations are actually regressing.
Morning was normal and we arrived at the hall 20 minutes early. I was in Don’s class for the first hour and then had to take some pens to Louise for her class. To be quite candid; I look for excuses to ride a machine. Now; it is always a valid excuse! Made it back and finished listening to his class. We then came back and had our Olive Garden Spaghetti for lunch. The two stooges get theirs with carrots, onions, peppers and all kinds of bad stuff. I eat correctly by only having meat and spaghetti and then putting soy sauce and ketchup on it. Wow; is it good! Can’t touch airplane food but only hospital food has that ability. Had to leave a bit early for a short meeting with the brethren from the North. We will be working with them in May. I know I tell you this each year but I am thankful to each of you who contribute to the seminar. You see, their round-trip costs about $120 per person. We are talking about a 4-hour bus ride followed by a 14-hour train ride followed by another 4-hour bus ride. There are one or two that had another 4-6 hours of bus riding. This amount is above their ability to pay and because of gracious brethren in the States; they are able to come down. Their mission is the same as all who come; learn and take back what you have learned to share with your brethren.
- I had (and the operative word is had) to come back to the hotel to deliver said pens I mentioned above. I then had (and the operative word is had) to come to my room so that my Coke Zero would not feel as though I had abandoned it.
- I felt sorrow for my brethren in the hall as I enjoyed my A/C and Coke Zero. OK, I only felt a little bad for my brothers. Oh well, I might as well speak the truth; I was just a happy camper!
- I was smiling once more as I was privileged to ride a machine to the hotel. I know I have already posted a picture of the traffic but thought I would give you another one. What is fascinating is that it is more crowded than it looks!
- When Martin comes to pick us, we always look for the banana. You see, dangling down from his rearview mirror is a plastic banana with a zipper. I think he has the only “banana” in town!
- There is a reason for the picture of Jean Claude on the right in a sports jacket! You cannot tell from the photo but it must be 90 degrees in there and my shirt was soaking wet as well as my handkerchief from wiping my brow. Every time I see one of my brothers in a suit with no sweat, I want to give them a good slap!
I then taught my class and I think it went well. We returned and had our showers and supper. I discussed with Louise some things we hope to accomplish with the children’s classes. Once she got on the computer Don and I had a good visit regarding our classes and some other stuff. It is really nice to be able to be with him. Since he lives in Idaho, we do not see each other often. I was sad yesterday because Linda had to run some errands and I was not able to see her smiling face which put a frown on mine. Lord willing; in several hours I will get to see her and Charlie Brown. We continue to be healthy and thank you for all of your prayers.