The following post is from a series of emails I wrote to my girlfriend at the time, whilst on a trip to Africa. She is now my wife, so I did something right.
As you are hearing, I had a bad week, this week. Today we had a meeting with a woman from the Health Department. We wanted to say to her; if you could have money in any area what would it be. This was so that we could prepare a proposal that addresses the areas that need work in our district.
We did ask her that question. Unfortunately, she didn’t listen. After 20 minutes of her telling us that the Health Department will never give us money to employ staff, despite the fact that we just had a briefing meeting with them, where they explained what they want to do is give us money to employ staff. And she just wouldn’t listen.
It was annoying, but welcome to officialdom within Africa. We actually found out the next day that the compulsory meeting regarding the proposal had been moved, without anyone telling us, from the 23rd to Friday! So the woman, instead of lecturing us on rubbish, could actually have shared the information that she definitely knew.
This afternoon, Grant came round to play Splash, which I won very narrowly. First game I failed at, but the next two were fine, taking me to a great victory. Unfortunately the weather here has not been very sunny, so the pool is freezing. It needs three or four warm days to become warm. On the plus side, if you have have 4 hot days, then the next is cold, all day the water is still warm.
In the evening I went to cell group. Rather than any program, tonight a woman shared her pain. Her husband has been an alcoholic for 12 years, and her life is misery. It was a hard evening, but everyone shared her pain, with prayer for the both of them, with advice and with love.
I spent at least an hour afterwards just lifting up the husband to God, going over and over the qualities of an elder from Titus, asking God to bring those qualities forward.
This is the verse the lady shared, feeling that God was using them to allow her to go away for a month, to have a break:
“As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.”
On the way home, wearing no shoes, I got trapped by a Bull Mastiff standing in the middle of the road growling. My only option was to walk an extra 2 blocks in order to avoid the dog. Still, I got home with all the skin on my legs and face still intact.