So to start this week's report, I guess I should probably explain my heading. Well, to start, we helped move a less-active family, the Crabbes, to the eastern part of the island. So that's crab #1. Last p-day, we adventured around the rocky coast and we caught a crab by stabbing it with a knife. Then the Philipino missionary we live with tried cooking it, but apparently it wasn't good. Crab #2. Today we were fishing, and made the classic stink pole, where you attach a string to a pole. Turns out crabs are greedy little things who won't let go of your bait when you are reeling it in, so you're able to pull them to shore. So I spent the morning catching crabs. It was a good morning. Crab #3.
I feel like a lot of my mission is just compiled of weird stories. Maybe that is how it is with other missions, but I feel like crazy is a constant companion of mine. So this week, a few things happened that were probably one of the weirder moments of my life, but reinforce my testimony that God is real and protects us. I know weird and heavenly protection aren't usually related, but I will soon explain why. Let's examine.
Weird moment #1. My companion and I were leaving the apartment for the first time that day after we had a zone conference (a giant missionary meeting) and we were walking to go visit someone when a boy zooms by on his bike. About a second and a half later we hear a crash and so turn around to see him on the ground with the bike on top of him. My comp takes off in a sprint, because he is the type of guy that'll tackle the shooter when disaster strikes, and I was quick to follow. We came up upon the kid, and the bike was too heavy for him to get off his leg, so we help him up. Nothing major happened, just a few deep scrapes, but the kid was shaken up so we brought him to a member's house who lived near by, and they helped clean him up. After he called his mom to come and help him, we were talking to him, and I guess it was the sight of his own blood, or maybe just the shock of the whole thing, but I looked at him and his eyes started to roll back into his head and he began to stumble. He was obviously going to pass out. So we laid him down in the grass, and he recovered, and his Mom came and got him. Now I'm not saying that we were the only people on the face of the planet who could and would help him, but I believe and am grateful that we were there to help this young boy out, and I believe that God wanted to protect him and so we were there. I'm just glad the kid didn't try walking home and pass out on the street. That was a cool story, not really a weird one.
Weird moment #2. On Friday, all the missionaries we gathered together at our apartment to visit before the night ended. So we were all sitting together, enjoying ourselves, talking story, and eating food, doing our usually missionary thing, and I decided it was a good time to get a little work out and work off that language around my belly. So I lifted some dumbells and what not, and was sitting on the ground resting in the middle of our living room. Nothing unusual about that. But I was sitting underneath the celling fan in our room. I thought nothing of it. Now to set the stage of the scene, I want you all to imagine a celling fan that has that glass bowl that hold the light bulbs in it. Okay, you got it? So I was sitting there, resting, with my shirt off, and a missionary walked into our apartment. I was looking down and the lights changed from dim to light, and I was wondering in my head what that missionary did. Then something told me that the fan was falling in my head. I didn't have much time to register what that meant, but I looked forward and that's when the glass bowl smashed on my head, shattering into pieces. The bowl had fallen off the fan and conked me right on the forehead! I was so confused. Baffled, really. Out of all moments to be sitting under a fan, I was sitting under it when it decided to rain thick glass interior decorations on me. By far one of the weirdest things that has happened to me. But the even weird part, was NOTHING really happened to me! I mean I had small cut on my foot from the glass, but I was fine! By all means, I should have been knocked out, if not worse. I barely had a bump on my head. I know for a fact that there was divine intervention on this one. Either God was trying to knock some sense into me, or he protected me from what could have been extremely disastrous. At least I know how people feel when they get a bottle smashed on them in fights.
Weird moment #3. The next night we were eating dinner with some members out on their Lanai. Everything was normal; we were having a pleasant conversation. We had good food, we were in a great mood, and there was a nice breeze that was passing by. Well this shady looking guy was walking along the street right next to the house, and being the type of guy I am, I just gave him a friendly wave. He looked at me very angrily, and kept walking. That's fine, nothing unusual. Well I turned my back to him and kept talking when about 10 seconds later I saw everyone staring in his direction. So I turned to look and this man, stopped dead in his tracks, looks right at us. And he was staring, he was glaring. And he just glared. Right then, the spirit was gone. The air was still. Everything had changed. We asked him what he needed, but he didn't say a word, only staring. He then crouched, scoping us out. The father went inside to go grab something, and my comp was searching for anything to protect us with in case this guy had really bad intentions. So I sat back down, and we all tried ignoring him to see if he would go away, but then he came closer, so all stood up. I asked him if he was okay, and told him that everything was alright. He looked at me, and mumbled, "Christian?" and I asked, "What" And repeated, "Christians?" I replied, "Yes, we are Christians." Then his face turned from mad to scary. He distorted his face and began breathing as if he was a bull ready to charge. I wasn't worried if he was to try and fight us, I was worried if he were strapped. So I just sat down, not looking at him, and I said a prayer in my heart, asking Heavenly Father to protect us, and to keep us safe. Right when I ended, I looked up and the member shrugged, and said, "He walked away." He passed by two times that night, never bothering us again. I know for a fact that Heavenly Father was aware of the situation we were in, and he heard my prayer, and he protected us. There is no doubt in my mind. What a joy it is to me to know that He cares. Probably one of the more intense, but spiritually fortifying moments of my mission.
All in all, I made it through the week safe. The Lord really does protect his own. Thank you for all the prayers, they really do help! And for all of you that thought I was hard headed over the years, I guess you were right. Until next week!
Elder "Head as hard as an ox, but empty as a jellyfish" Gleave