Dear Family and Friends,
This was a busy week with an Area Conference for senior missionaries with President Curtis, two Returned Missionary Orientations and three Self Reliance committee meetings. We also attended a ward conference at Mataheko, where our good friend Michael Odoom serves as Bishop.
What did we learn?...
The word Remember is mentioned 424 in the scriptures, as connected with covenants- Remember the sabbath day, remember the poor, and always remember Him, to name a few.
President Monson said, "Remember who you are and what you are to become." I love the principle of "remembering" because it implies an action will follow (if you remember the cookies are in the oven you will take them out!) Sometimes however, we remember and then choose not to act because the action is unpleasant, or not what the natural man/woman wants to do. That's when we need to "remember" to submit our will to the will of the Father. That's what covenant-keepers do.
Sister Curtis shared a favorite hymn performed by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, "My Shepherd Will Supply My Need." We learned this is Issac Watts' interpretation of the 23rd Psalm. It's beautiful music and yes, brought tears to this missionary (but I was not alone!)
In 2015 we learned that 143 new wards/branches were created in the Africa West Area, but only 16 new buildings were constructed. This year it is predicted that 16 new stakes will be organized.
At Cape Coast we learned more sweet stories of the members here. Honestly, I absolutely love asking them to tell us about their conversions and lives. They all elude to how hard life is and share some of their challenges. "My progress is not easy" and "the struggle is still on" but within a minute they will say "things are looking up!" and "so my story continues...." I love their courageous positivity!
At Assin Foso we were impressed by the Stake leadership and organization of both the RM orientation and the SR committee meeting. We learned they are planning a business fair to be held in May. This is exciting news since it is an opportunity for us to see the impact of SR principles in the lives of those who participated in the program, and to meet more business owners.
Bishop Odoom taught his ward a wonderful lesson as he described visiting a palm oil plantation. The trees that produce palm oil are hardy, and resist most diseases. However when they become infected with disease their productivity and usefulness is diminished. Bishop Odoom asked what diseases hold us back and hinder our progression? Has the disease of laziness, pride, ingratitude, selfishness, indulgence, worldliness, or entitlement crept into our lives? The only way to be cured is to turn to the Master Healer... "And I beheld multitudes of people who were sick, and who were afflicted with all manner of disease... and they were healed by the power of the Lamb of God" (1 Nephi) I have just summarized it, but it was such a great talk!
So, let us work a little harder on preventing those diseases that hinder our progress and let us "always remember Him, that we can have His spirit to be with us" this coming week.
Elder and Sister Lambert
Pictures: Beautiful Assin Foso chapel
RM's and leaders at Assin Foso
Jed, can you identify this lizard? A friend for Jasper? ( Jasper is a Bearded Dragon residing at the Hatch's home)