Monday, April 14, 2014

Mar 30, 2014 Locked In!

Roommates can be loads of fun. Sometimes they can be a real pain too. Last Thursday Elder Duffy and I were in the middle of our 3 hour weekly planning session as we watched our Vietnamese speaking counterparts, Elder Barker and Elder Vu, head out early, presumably to go catch an appointment. About 30 minutes later our work was done, we made lunch, ate and put our shoes on. After a quick prayer we opened the door and stopped. The outside padlock was locked. Oops. I called Elder Vu and learned that those two had set off on a journey to look for Vietnamese people around the area where they were planning on making an English class north of the city. Very north. They were over a 45 minute bike ride away. Darn...

We told them we would call them back and then started looking for a way out of our house. A couple of problems with that. People around here are very worried about thieves so all of our windows have bars on them. Very pretty, flowery bars but not bars that we were going to get out of. We don't have a car so the only thing we use the garage for is drying laundry and no one knows where the key is. Back door leads to our own personal concrete block with more bars on the windows. After more looking around I found a window facing our front fence that I could get my arm out of. If someone was on the other side (we could have called a member who lived nearby) and I could throw the keys under the tree but over the barbed wire fence then they could use our keys to get into our house.  After judging it for a minute or two we decided to go for it and called someone to come help us, but just as they answered who should show up but our landlord! I just dropped him the keys and he let us out. I actually wish it had ended a little more adventurously. 

Really wanted to share about one of the sisters in my district here. Her name is Sister Chuong and she is from Sen Sok, a very poor very undeveloped area north of the city that is mostly full of displaced persons that have been given very cheap land by the government to placate them (that's hearsay but it sounds about right). She's three years older than me but no one would ever guess it because she is about five feet tall and has a voice like she had a freak helium accident that she never recovered from. That sounded a little negative but it's not. Sister Chuong is the nicest person ever and is always the first person to jump up and help when something needs to be done. My trainer was trained in Sen Sok several years ago and had mentioned that she always helped the Elders and showed them people who needed help and helped teach and was generally awesome. Sisters get escorts after dark, so we were taking them home after a meeting at the church and I asked her what her church calling was before the mission. She answered matter-of-factly, "Oh, I was the Young Women's President, and the institute teacher and the 1st Counselor in the Relief Society Presidency". No further commentary necessary.

Elder and Sister Johnson, a senior missionary couple who have been serving here are headed home this month. In her farewell address, Sister Johnson shared from a story that I know from this video on
Like Hugh Brown in the story, most all of us have our times where we want to argue with our maker. Isaiah wrote "Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands? (Isaiah 45:9) We are the clay in our Maker's hands. We are so small in comparison and yet there are those that say to him, "What are you even making out of me?" Much better then, when we swallow our pride and tell our loving Father, "But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand. (Isaiah 64:8)"
Have a great week. Love y'all!
Elder Vore

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