I came into Liberia from Sierra Leone. I had a Land Rover and driver/interpreter. He would drive up the road and wait and I would carry the cross.
When I arrived at one village, a young man about 17 years old came up to me and said, "Sir, will you tell us about God?" I almost cried as I told 75 people about Jesus. As I walked up they parted for me to pass. One man ran forward and fell on his knees. Folding his hands, he said, "Bless me, Jesus, oh, Jesus, bless me, I want to go to heaven." He was crying. The crowd pushed close around. He put my hand to his head. I felt so strange. Then I said, "I am a man, not Jesus. I am not Jesus but He is near. I will tell you how to talk to Him, how to know Him. He will bless you."
He pleaded, "Oh, yes, yes, tell me, tell me."
I told and everyone else heard. Then the two of us prayed. He leaped up in joy and happiness.
At the last home on a hill an old man stood with six boys near him.
I waved to him and he called, "We've been waiting for you all day.
We want you to preach to these boys - I will interpret. We've heard
about you." I climbed up the hill to this elderly 69-year old man. He
gathered up his six little boys lined in a row beside him and I
preached to them. They all gave their lives to Jesus. I loved them
so much. He asked if he could carry the cross a short distance. He
and the six boys walked with me for about a half a mile, then we hug-
ged, kissed and said good-bye, never to meet again until heaven.
Today I am so dirty. I am along a little road where trucks pass by and
just cover me with dirt. At the end of the day a black man said to me,
"You black man or are you white man?" The road dust has covered
me for three days and I am really a mess.
As I preached today I almost fainted. I had no microphone, just my
voice. I was so weak I could hardly stand since I had preached 15
times today, exhausted, but praising God. It takes a lot of energy to keep going across this vast continent. I usually don't mention much about myself so it is hard for anyone to see me as I really am. My feet are in bandages, my shoes are worn through and the rocks are cutting my feet. I must find someplace to get resoles on my shoes. My little toe and the soles of my feet are bleeding. I now weigh to 173 pounds.
Tonight I am in the bush. I feel Jesus so close to me, wrapping His arms around me. Oh, He must love me so much. I know God truly loves me and I love Him. I will go on, praying that I shine as a light in these distant lands for His glory.
Today, I carried the cross into the Executive Mansion of Dr. Talbot, the President of Liberia. It was really something. As I entered I tried to get the cross in the elevator, but it wouldn't fit so I had to carry it up the stairs to the fifth floor. Guards and soldiers joined in this difficult task of getting the cross up the stairway. When I arrived they opened two plush doors of the Executive Mansion and there was Dr. Talbot standing behind a big desk with his entire Cabinet in attendance. He greeted me, came over to the cross and lifted it upon his shoulder. I asked to have a prayer, so we bowed our heads together and prayed. There I was, a cross walker in the President's office. When came down the stairs through the Mansion, about 100 soldiers, guards and maids had gathered. I preached to them and the Executive Mansion was in a state of Jesus confusion.
I am dirty, hungry and tired. This is a major highway, but graveled. It leads
west, north, south and east, so traffic is very heavy - big trucks, buses
and cars. It's the most dust I've ever had to walk through. Sometimes six
trucks or cars come one right after the other and for minutes I must
breathe through a solid sheet of dirt. I hold my breath as long as I
possible trying to find a break in the dust to breathe. As I continue
to walk, I hold my breath until the next break in traffic. Praise God.
I am covered with red dirt and as I sweat it runs as though
I'm pouring blood!
Every day was hot. I poured sweat and had to drink, drink, and
drink, not to dehydrate. Sometimes I was in open country but
much of the time I carried the cross through bush trees with small
farms along the roadside. Then every short distance was another
village. I could see crowds of people around the Land Rover looking
and waiting for me to arrive. I would arrive, get some water to drink then stand on the hood of the Land Rover and preach. Then I would do a brief Bible study of how to live for Jesus.
Then I would sit and rest a few minutes before walking on. People were crowding around trying to talk with me as I rested. Sometime I used the interpreter but often people who spoke English came up to talk. Oh, I loved the people! Often the village people were bringing me food to eat as I rested.
In most villages and towns many people would walk through the streets
with me. Sometimes I would have hundreds leave town walking and
slowly lose the crowd, as we got further out of town.
Late in the evening we would park the Land Rover in a village near a
house and spend the night. I liked to sleep in the homemade bed we
had constructed inside the back of the Land Rover. With the windows
open it I had a breeze and all my supplies were nearby. I had a radio
and could pick up BBC and Voice of America radio. This was my way
of keeping up with the world.
My main diet was canned food and fresh fruit. In each capital city I
could find a store with western food. I would stock up.
I just lived each day in the Glory of God and in the presence of people. I remember that almost every night I went to sleep with people gathered around the Land Rover peeking in at me. Ha!
What a wonderful way to live. I walked from dawn till night almost every day. I would lie down and rest for about an hour or so at noon. This helped refresh me and also got me out of the hottest time of day.
Walking on to Ivory Coast.
God bless the beautiful people.
Pilgrim followers of Jesus,
Arthur and Denise Blessitt