This week has been full of interesting experiences and events.
To start the week, we ran out of water in our Polytanks which we fill every 2 weeks. There was some miscommunication between our branch president and our zone leaders about when the water was coming, so we went all of Monday, Tuesday and most of Wednesday without water, which made us get a little creative. We have a big bucket that fits 40 gallons or so of water just in case we run out of water, and we used that to bathe and wash dishes on Tuesday morning. Then Wednesday, we still had no water, and they said it was on the way... well, it wasn't! :) So we went to shower at the chapel since it used to be a house. Then Thursday, my companion and I just went and fetched water at the well near our house. It was funny as a lot of our neighbors were laughing at me because they had never seen a white person fetching water on their head! :)
Next in the week, we had a lot of lessons fall through, so we had a lot of hours of finding people without a whole lot of success, but that is just missionary work in general. We have stopped teaching a few people who literally run away when we go to see them or those who see us and then grab the bucket to fetch water at that very moment, so this week is gonna be full of new people who want to learn with us.
Our apartment has begun to all exercise together following Elder Boyce's (more commonly known as Coach Boyce) rugby crossfit workout. Wow. It is rough. But, it really builds our apartment unity and it feels great to finally workout seriously. I am not great at that as we walk many miles everyday up hill both ways, I swear, but we figured that we could stop making excuses and workout together. Turns out, I love it! We all get along really well and it just helps us when we are working out together to grow closer.
We went back to Sis. Mavis house to paint her ceiling this week also. The other Elders joined us too this time in hopes of making the work faster, but it took 4 hours to finish. Ugh, not what we planned for, so we had to cancel an appointment to finish and get home and bathe, but it is finished, and I think I have had enough painting for the next few months... Hahahaa!
On Saturday, we got up to clean the chapel as usual. The members don't always come to help, so it ends up just being the 4 missionaries who clean the chapel, but this time, we had a few come to help us clean which was great! Afterwards, Elder Boyce had brought his Frisbee (a sport that no Ghanaian has ever played) and we got to play a little bit of Frisbee with those that came! It was sooo much fun to throw a Frisbee around! It has been a longtime since I have had one in my hand for sure, and the people playing thought it was the strangest game, but they had fun. :)
To finish the week, we fasted this Sunday, and to break our fast, we all had a huge plate of rice. The reason I bring this up is because Elder Kangwa (maybe 5 foot tall, maybe 100lbs, rumored certified ninja) is convinced that he always eats as much as his companion, Elder Boyce (5'8" 160+ wrestler and rugby player), but every time, Elder Boyce eats more, and it is always hilarious for us to hear their bantering!! So we thought that we could resolve the matter by having an eating competition on Sunday after our fast. Elder Kangwa did eat all of his rice this time, so there still will be more jokes about who can eat more in the future. But also, there will be plenty of laughs to come! :)
For my spiritual thought this week, I again will turn to the book of 1 Nephi in the Book of Mormon. It seems that I can spend 2 days studying one chapter of 1 Nephi and get so much. Anyways, I studied in 1 Nephi 17 and I will share from verse 13-14:
13 And I will also be your light in the wilderness; and I will prepare the way before you, if it so be that ye shall keep my commandments; wherefore, inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments ye shall be led towards the promised land; and ye shall know that it is by me that ye are led.
14 Yea, and the Lord said also that: After ye have arrived in the promised land, ye shall know that I, the Lord, am God; and that I, the Lord, did deliver you from destruction; yea, that I did bring you out of the land of Jerusalem.
The first verse talks about how the Lord will prepare a way for us and guide us in our times of trial and hardship, the wilderness, to a better state in life, the promised land, on conditions that we keep His commandments. As we are being led, He promises that we shall know that He is leading us. Then, in verse 14, we learn how keeping the commandments will help us to build our testimony. The Lord promises that AFTER we have arrived in the promised land, that we will know that He is the one who led us from destruction. Sometimes that may require a considerable amount of humbling, just as Lehi left all his worldly possessions in Jerusalem at the command of the Lord to go into the wilderness to live in tents, hunt for his food, fetch his water I assume, and travel for 8 good years in the wilderness. Many times, in my life, I don't see how I fit into the Lord's plan, I just know that I am trying to keep His commandments and the Lord leads me from what may have been destruction which I couldn't see before. And truly, as I look back on those experiences, I can see that the Lord has led me to a promised land, a better state in life, a higher ground than I was before. I know the Lord can guide us and bless us with a testimony, if only we keep His commandments and trust in His plan for us. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.