Before it starts to get really hot in Abu Dhabi, we had a pancake breakfast in the park as a ward (church congregation) activity this morning. I wish I would have taken a picture of the massive, industrial-sized tub of Nutella that was there – apparently Nutella is really popular here and you put it on just about everything including pancakes.
Our ward is interesting because it’s made up entirely of expats – there are no native Emiratis in church because the native Emiratis are of the Muslim faith. We have people in our ward from all over the world – the US, Philippine Islands, England, Canada, Australia, India, Pakistan… I’m sure I’m missing a few countries. One of the brothers in our ward told us a fascinating story about how he became a member in India… it was so remarkable the way it happened and then afterwards he told us that the story has been posted on the LDS Church History website. Basically his uncle was a scientist/expat working in Samoa, and learned about the gospel from a missionary couple – the sister was dying of breast cancer and asked her husband to give Dr. Edwin and his wife her set of scriptures if she died – which he did upon her passing. Dr. Edwin ended up coming back and sharing the gospel with his family – as a result, 22 people were baptized in one day, and our friend was one of them. There are now over 12,000 Saints in India. The Lord’s timing is so amazing. There are so many instances in my own life that I have questioned “Why this – why now?” and through the gift of hindsight, I can see the Lord’s hand in the details.In church yesterday in something totally unrelated, one of the speakers mentioned a saying that goes along the lines of “one decision can affect 10,000 lives”. Clearly, that bears true in the actions of the missionary family in Samoa making the decision to share the gospel, the decision to accept the gospel by Dr. Edwin and his family, and then his decision to share it with his extended family. These decisions truly did affect 10,000 lives.