Road trip to Florida.
11/20/2009. 1204. I need to take better notes, or remember to use my mp3 recorder. I was in either Kentucky or Tennessee. I think I was inspired to take a certain exit, and go down the road for a while. After driving a few minutes, there was a yard sale going on, and I felt inspired to stop there. I bought some trinket. I offered a Joy to the World DVD and a Mr. Krueger's Christmas DVD to the two gentlemen there. I described them as Christmas videos from the Mormon church, so that they knew the source. They were just regular English-speaking Caucasian-American guys.
11/20/2009. 1205. At the next exit or shortly thereafter, I was prompted of the Spirit to take that exit and go to a particulat gas station. I bought some gas and something inside, like a beverage. Again, no obvious speakers of foreign languages. To the owner/cashier, I offered a Joy to the World DVD, describing it as a Christmas DVD or Nativity DVD with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and he accepted it.
. Around 3:15 pm, I saw a sign for a Chinese restaurant. It was one of the offical Interstate signs that shows the businesses for Food - Gas - Lodging at that exit. The Spirit indicated I should go to the Chinese restaurant featured on the sign. So It took that exit and drove the 2 miles to the restaurant.
The cashier/owner looked bright/shiny, so I figured she was my "intended contact." But while I was waiting for my food, and then eating, I also saw a lady who looked like she was from the Philippines. The Filipina lady ordered, left, and then came back later for her food. As she was leaving the second time, I asker her, in Tagalog, if she spoke Tagalog. She said "yes" in English. I offered her a free book in Tagalog from my church. I said it was "the Book of Mormon" and asked if she had heard about it. She said "Yes, I'm a member." But she didn't have a Tagalog copy, and she was willing to accept one. She also spoke Waray, and was willing to accept a Waray copy too.
I forget now if I had paid already by that time, but I had left enough "stuff" at my table to indicate that I'd be back if I hadn't paid, and we both went outside to get the books. It turned out she had parked next to my car anyway.
She asked if I was a missionary or ward missionary. I told her that this was her miracle, that I was from Indiana, headed to Florida on the Interstate, and the only reason I was there was due to a spiritual prompting to go to that restaurant when I saw the sign for it on the road.
She said she hadn't been to church since her mother died, and I replied that Heavenly Father must be looking out for her to send someone to meet her like that. She also accepted a "Together Forever" DVD. I suggested she go see her bishop or branch president and tell him what just happened.
By meeting another customer like that, it made me think that the two previously inspired stops may have been "timing loops" to keep me busy so that I arrived at the restaurant at just the right time to meet her.
1207. I went back in and finished my meal. When the cashier/owner took a breather, I offered her a Chinese Book of Mormon along with an English copy and a DVD, which she accepted.
11/20/2009. Later that evening, going through Atlanta during rush hour, I was in the wrong lane, and twice took wrong turns that delayed me.
11/20/2009. Follow-up. In Georgia, just south of Atlanta, I saw a Texaco gas station sign just beore an exit and I felt prompted to go there. When I got there, I realized it was the same place I had been prompted to stop at almost 2 years ago. I asked the cashier if he still had the books I had given him, and he said he gave them to someone else. I asked if he wanted more, and he said okay, so I gave him Urdu and English copies of the Book of Mormon, and Pashto and English copies of Gospel Fundamentals.
11/20/2009. 1208. At the same gas station, standing next to me in line was a man who seemed to be from Africa. I asked him where he was from, and he said Nigeria. He spoke Igbo, so I offered him an Igbo and an English Book of Mormon and he accepted. We talked for several minutes outside, and I realized I might have had an Igbo Bible in my car, so I asked him if he had one, and he said no. I looked for it, and found it, and offered it to him, and he accepted it. He was driving a very expensive car, so I said that instead of asking him to pay for it, I would like him to "pay it forward" and help someone else out, and it would eventually get back to me. He gave me his business card.
11/20/2009. 1209. I was so excited at that encounter with another customer, that I got back on the Interstate going wrong way. It occured to me that the wrong turns in Atlanta had served as "timing loops" again for this encounter with another customer.
I didn't realize I was going the wrong direction for about 10 miles. I got off the Interstate at next exit after I realized my mistake, and felt prompted to go to one of the gas stations there. I saw a guy dumpster-diving in the trash cans at the gas station and pulling out styrofoam clamshells with left-over food. I gave him some fresh fruit and bread that I had in the car, and encouraged him not to eat from trash cans as he could get sick.
I went inside and purchased something, and realized one of the cashiers was foreign-born. He was from Nigeria and accepted Igbo and English copies of the Book of Mormon. Again, an absent-minded mistake of going the wrong way led to another opportunity. But, due to the timing needed, I had to meet the guy at the Texaco first. What I thought were stupid mistakes actually generated more opportunities.
11/20/2009. 1210. I forget if this was prompted or not, but I got off at another exit and went to a Chinese restaurant. The owners accepted Chinese and English of the Book of Mormon, and an employee accepted Spanish and English copies of the Book of Mormon. I just had an egg roll.
11/20/2009. 1211. Next to the Chinese restaurant was a convenience store. I bought something, and the cashier accepted a Hindi Book of Mormon and Hindi Liahona.
I then went to a Taco Bell or something like that across the road. I thought that might have been inspired, but I did not recognize any opportunities. It's possible that I was supposed to just talk to English speakers.
11/20/2009. 1212. At the motel I stayed at that night, the night clerk accepted a Hindi and an English Book of Mormon.
Labels: Chinese, DVD, gas station, Hindi, Igbo, restaurant, road trip, Spanish, Tagalog, Waray