Imagine living in a hot, humid environment for a year and a half, and then one day waking up in a cold, dry environment. And that's L'Harmattan for you. You'll go to get a towel or a hat or a tie, feel the fabric in your hands, and say "Wow, that's a lot more dry than it was yesterday".
This week was fantastic. We had many, many miracles.
On Tuesday, we held our zone meeting. That went very well. Elder Mukendi, the new branch president at Kpalimé, gave a great lesson on teaching with the Spirit. He's a former zone leader, so he helps us out very much. When I was giving my lesson, it just wasn't clicking, and then he gave an inspired comment that really helped everyone understand the concept. It was awesome.
Afterwards, we went to eat at Zalat's, and then we did a split with the Assistants. I worked with Elder Colby, the new Togo Assistant, who's an old friend from the Finagnon zone. It's been practically a year since the last time we've seen each other, so we got to catch up and have a good time working hard, testifying, and swapping mission stories.
During our split, at one point, I realized that I had misplaced my Seychelle water bottle (that thing is very dear to me). We backtracked, and I went to where I thought I misplaced it. The bottle wasn't there, but as we turned to go somewhere else, we ran into a stranger that introduced himself as the brother of a member in Attiegou. Well, insert missionary work, and we swapped contacts, and presented our message. Eventually, we found the bottle. The Lord does look out for us, and in our quest for what we want, He often leads us to those who need our help.
This morning, we had an awesome zone activity. We played some soccer, then ate some delicious atieké with talapia. We've got a good zone, and we had a lot of fun together. (:
Elder Malala and I have been really blessed in our sector. We had already met our goals by the end of Wednesday evening, and so the rest of the week was just frosting on the cake. We ended up teaching 33 lessons, which was a warmly-welcomed blessing. I'm super grateful that the Lord has blessed me with a wonderful, hard-working companion. He's the best.
On Thursday, I did a split with Elder Mayani, an elder in our zone who works at Kégué. He's from the part of Congo that borders Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, and Zambia, so his accent is very different from most accents I've heard out here. Honestly, I probably only understood about 70 percent of what he said. Nevertheless, he's a cool guy, and it was great to see a part of our zone.
Side note: because of the split, and the need to be ready to go Thursday and Friday mornings, I did not do my morning sport, and boy oh boy did the mission fatigue catch up to me. Do exercise daily, folks. (: Overall, my health is good though, I'm bounced back from the virus, but Elder Malala had it this week. Despite the sickness, we still worked very hard.
On Sunday, me and Elder Malala were really hoping that the Lord would bless us for our earnest effort in the sector. Yes, He did bless us! We had three investigators come to Church, and I got the most referrals I've ever received in a single sitting from members, which was an absolute miracle. "Hey, Elder Phillips, this is my friend who's only free on Sundays: how can we teach him?" "Elders, I've got four kids over the age of eight who need baptizing," "Elder Phillips, do you know this lady? I didn't think so, this is her first time at church." It was awesome. I felt very overwhelmed, almost as if I could say "Whoa, everyone, let's make a line of referrals and proceed in an orderly manner, please." It was an absolute miracle, and I'm super grateful that the Lord blessed us with that experience.
During our split, Elder Colby told me that his motto is "stronger and stronger," from Helaman 3:35- "Nevertheless they did fast and pray oft, and did wax stronger and stronger in their humility, and firmer and firmer in the faith of Christ, unto the filling their souls with joy and consolation, yea, even to the purifying and the sanctification of their hearts, which sanctification cometh because of their yielding their hearts unto God." Life should be lived in crescendo. We should grow, not shrink. As Elder L. Tom Perry taught: “If you don’t raise the bar, how will you ever know your potential?” I invite each of you to, no matter where you are in your spiritual stance, to wax stronger and stronger, and firmer and firmer. Raise the bar, not necessarily in an extreme way, but in a sincere way, to do a little more good, and to be a little more like Christ.
I love you all! Have a wonderful week!
P.S. Because Gertrude is too pregnant, baptism, and going to church, are too physically demanding for her, so we're going to push her baptismal date to March, after her delivery. We are going to try to baptize Papa Favor this week! Wish us luck, and keep us in your prayers! (: