Birthdays do go on even in Zambia. Elder Shields turned another year older last week. The BIG 70 - and he doesn't look a day older! We even found him a Chocolate Cake to eat - pricey - but hey, when that's your Birthday present, it's worth it. Oh, actually Elder got the privilege of checking out a Zambian Dentist - the tooth that had broken before and been put in by the orthodontist broke again and fell out. We took it with us and the Dentist put it back in - all went very well. She was trained in South Africa.
We were invited to the Lookharts for Burton's birthday dinner - it was great! We enjoyed the evening. Friday we went for another drive to the Copperbelt - this time we were able to get the majority of the reports we'd been trying to get. The members in the Copperbelt really feel they need a missionary couple up there to help with their branches. Some are SOO new to the church and put into leadership positions that they need help learning what is expected of them. They really feel the mantel of their callings - and they take it to heart. They are wonderful people, but can get overwhelmed with things when they don't have phones, computers, addresses, transportation, or helpers in many instances. What they do have is a Love of their Savior - and they recognize Him in their lives. We did go out to Kawama Branch on Saturday afternoon (the road doesn't exist really), to see how it was coming along - they are building a Chapel for them - they meet in an old house - that is all that is available in their compound. They are very excited to have a better place to meet - We then went on Sunday morning to visit Ndola branch - it was Fast Day! There were no pauses during the meeting and the testimonies born were wonderful. We felt very uplifted when we left. We are very blessed to be here to associate with these wonderful people.
Today we took the car in for an oil change - they called to say something is broken underneath - and we aren't the least bit surprised - the roads leave much to be desired. Elder does worry a lot about the car and the roads - the ruts are SOOO deep that we are hitting bottom too often - even at 1 KPH - It's good that it'll be fixed for the new person. We hear we are getting a Toyota Hilux in Malawi in place of our little Corolla. Gas wise, we'll probably miss the Corolla. Malawi is much hillier? (is that a word) than Zambia.
We are busy working on reports of all kinds, to have them Done before we go to J'berg next week for 4 days. We do need the car back to go to some of the branches and pick up reports to be able to enter them. We are able to do that (we have transportation), they do not and transport is expensive for them. A Big Challenge.
We've had a big shakeup of missionaries - 7 or so came over from Malawi to Zambia - and about the same went the other direction. So, it's kind of like everyone is getting used to a new area - some are better at that than others. The Work goes on - it's so rewarding to be part of it, even if our part seems quite small. We are grateful that we chose to come to Zambia to do the Lord's Work. We see his hand in our lives each and every day in the things we do and the choices we make. We know he protects and helps us to know what he wants us to do.
O.K. I was going to add some pictures of all of the above but just discovered that the camera is still in the Lookharts truck (they brought us back from the dealership). It will have to wait until tomorrow afternoon so I won't publish this yet.
To Whoever Reads This: BE THE BEST YOU CAN BE!