Lion, Cheetah Park

Hey guys,

Today was another relaxing P-day filled with excitement and adventure. I’ve found it easier to email you at around this time, since on Saturdays we usually do some fun things. Today we went to a fun place called Lion, Cheetah Park. It’s a really fun game park with just hundreds of lions and a few other fun animals. You don’t even need a game park guide in a jeep. They just open the gate and let you start driving inside, with the lions right outside of your car. You just have to promise never to walk out haha. We got there at just the right time too, feeding time! They all followed a truck with lots of meat and we got to watch them feast on their dinner. We were just encompassed about with so many, many lions it was unbelieveable. After the game drive you there’s kind of like a zoo section where you get to walk around and they just have so many more lions, even white lions! While you’re waling around the park you’ll just here lions groaning and roaring from every direction. It was like we were actually in the wild!
I’m going to apologise because the life of an AP just isn’t that interesting. For right now it’s a lot of helping missionaries with cars, coupons, and housing equipment. Yesterday I did what seemed like an eternity of driving. From about 12 noon to about 9 at night we were doing several errands. I was driving long enough for me to even get two speeding tickets. It’s just a bunch of clueless police with a gun that’ll clock your speed. Both times they just smiled and asked for money. They both asked for about 20 dollars and I just refused and gave them both tens. The corruption in this country is seriously just something else. This money is just going straight to their pockets I know it. They don’t just give you receipts they just want their money. If it sound like I’m irritated I’m really not, I actually think that it’s kind of funny. All of the people in the car noticed how calm and collected I was when I was pulled over.
One thing about the office that I seem to like is the office couple, the Petersons. Their from Sandy Utah and LOVE feeding us. They take us to the nicest places in Zimbabwe, Places missionaries could never afford.  Yesterday they took us to a dessert place and to start off, I got a Lindt hot chocolate, served with a Lindt chocolate spoon! Also every other day Sister Peterson will bake the whole office American style cookies and brownies. I think this office is going to make me fat haha. Not as much walking, and a whole lot of eating.
One place that we were invited to go see last week was a resort that’s owned by someone who used to work for the church. She was a housemaid who would clean our rooms, gone millionaire haha. I don’t know where she got that money, but it’s the sweetest (and cheapest) get away resort EVER. She invited us to be her first guests and I was just impressed. Every thing was just beautiful, and it’s just out side of town.
We were teaching an investigator last week who’s name is Douglas. He’s a humble man who says that he’s been called by a prophet of God to serve a mission in South Africa. No denomination, the whole thing is just weird. We taught him the restoration and gave him a Book of Mormon and has promised to come to church to see what it’s like. I’m so grateful for the knowledge that we have of the Great Apostasy and the Restoration of the Fulness of the Gospel. I love the doctrine of the Apostasy, it’s so simple, yet so misunderstood. It was clearly stated by Paul in the book of 2nd Thessalonians:
2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, aor be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by bletter as from us, as that the cday of Christ is at hand.
3 Let no man deceive you by any means: afor that day shall not come, except there come a bfalling away first, and thatcman of dsin be revealed, the son of perdition; 
 
The church is true, and this work is not our own. So let’s make Him proud.
 
Much love,
DSCF9794.JPGElder Robison
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Safari!

Hey guys,

So last week even though I was able to email you, our pday was taken
away to do some things for President, so he gave us a pday on
Wednesday. We decided to take a trip to a place called Pamuzinda. It’s
a really cool resort with all sorts of fun things to do. The two
events that we chose were the game drive and elephant interaction. It
was really cool because it was only the three of us on the jeep, we
had the whole game park to ourselves. It’s a place where wild animals
just roamed free with out a care in the world. We first stopped by the
lions den, then off to see the rest of the animals on the reservation.
We saw impala, elant, ostriches, wildebeest, zebra (wasn’t new to me),
warthogs, and finally giraffes! Those are seriously the coolest
creatures. We were searching for them almost the whole time and near
the end when we thought that all hope was lost, there they were, a
family of giraffe. About ten or eleven giraffe all staring at us. Our
guide said it was safe to move out of the car to get closer so I went
on a little journey and decided that my pictures needed to look more
sharp. There I stood, in the midst of those giraffe just staring at
me, wondering what this “murungu” was doing.

After the game drive the deal came with a lunch. When we got off the
ride we relaxed and bathed in the sun for about 30 minutes so things
could be prepared. We then awoke to a man tapping us on the shoulder
saying lunch is ready and it was all set up on a porch on top of a
small creek with crocodiles in it. It was an awesome lunch, and the
view was breathtaking.

After lunch we then got to go see the elephants and play with them.
They were super friendly and it was all really safe. I even got to
feed them peanuts! At the end they performed a little show of tricks
and it was all just spectacular.

Sure enough play time ended and we had to get back to work. Work hard,
play hard, right? Basically all that my job has been so far is
checking houses, buying materials, hiring people to fix problems, at
the same time as leading by example and doing indicators and numbers.
President Mkhabela has really helped me out with my new assignment and
has already taught me many things about what it means to be a leader.
The last AP’s that he had really flunked at being leaders and by doing
things by example so he’s really hoping that he can trust me.

The area we adopted is called Borrowdale. The branch is really sweet
and compared to previous branches this one is well organized. We
already had a baptism today! One couple and also a sister. The
previous missionaries who looked over this branch did a superb job
finding these people, and the branch did a good job making sure these
people were baptized.

All of these responsibilities that I’ve been given have been
challenging and it’s all come at once. Making sure the mission is in
check, and on point. Well it’s not super exciting work, but it keeps
me busy. One piece of advice given to me by President was this, “When
you’re an assistant, you don’t have a life of your own. So forget
about yourself and get to work”. It reminds me of a phrase that just
keeps popping up in my head, “lose yourself”. I think to lose yourself
is to give, forget and never look back. It’s doing everything whole
heartedly without ever asking for anything in return. I and my
companions learned that lesson this week dealing with some frustrating
issues pertaining to missionaries. Sometimes we don’t have pdays, and
now I hardly have time to write to you guys, so I guess that Lord just
keeps asking more and more of me. It’s all fine with me, the reward is
the same, I just have to work hard.

Much love,
Elder Robison.

Big News

Hey guys,

So many of you already know (because we skyped on Sunday), but as of this week I and my new companion are the new Zimbabwe Harare Mission Assistants to the Mission President. To this moment I don’t really know why I’m here, or how I got here, all I know is that I still need to work hard. So how this office has been functioning is there used to be AP’s a few transfers ago, but President really didn’t like the things that there were doing. There were also Flats and Fleets managers and a receptionist and a finance manager. There used to be six elders in this office. Then for the last two transfers President just removed the AP’s and the flats manager (Elder Gundani who is my new companion) was an acting assistant. Now he wants AP’s again so now we’re in a threesome in the office. My companion and I (the new AP’s) and Elder Shepherd who is the fleets manager. The Petersons have taken finance and reception now. This transfer is also the last one for my beloved companion so I think I’ll just list all of the new responsibilities that I have to take over and learn in about 6 weeks:
– Create a model area for the zone leaders to see.
– Learn the flats managers tasks meaning calling and fixing housing
– Doing indicators
– Learn every area in Zimbabwe
– Leading other missionaries
– Doing logistics
All these things on top of setting a good example for the new missionaries coming in and doing everything President asks me. He doesn’t like having a lot of missionaries in the office, so his acting AP’s will take over Fleets and Flats as well. This is going to be a challenging experience in my mission life. I just hope that I can live up to the potential that President sees in me.
This week was lots of work. We were going to bed at midnight and getting up at six every morning to do things. One cool thing that I got to be involved in though included picking up the new missionaries at the airport. I got to see their big grins when they saw the first missionaries in Zimbabwe. My companion told they’re going to remember that for ever. President Mkhabela really meant it when he told me he wants me to the face of the mission. He likes my attitude and my views toward everything, and he values my input and opinions.
One thing that I love about my companion is basketball! He’s actually really really good, and we like to play together all of the time. I’m pretty bad now, but from here I can only improve. Also please keep me updated on NBA I’m super interested.
This week we’ve been doing a lot of traveling and running even before 8 o’clock so I haven’t done as much scripture study as I would like. What I have been reading though is the Isaiah chapters in the BoM. Every time I read the BoM those chapters just blow over my head, but I’m really getting a firm understanding of what it’s talking about now. It really is a testimony booster to me that the BoM is true. Many of what is said in those chapters come alive before my eyes, and I can see Gods love for all of his children. I guess what Nephi said is really true, these things are to be understood in the latter-days. I promise that as we prayerfully read these chapters and even the rest of the BoM, the veil will be taken from our eyes and truth will be unfolded.
I’m still learning a lot, and I’m still sort of young on mission, so God’s plans for me I guess just keep taking off. The possibilities in this mission are endless, I just got to put my head down and go to work.
Much love,
Elder Robison.

New Branch Working!

Hey guys,

I love my new branch presidency. They just absolutely love the work, and the progress of the branch. We’ve been struggling to help one father get married so that he can be baptized, and one of our members just decided to visit him and he solved everything. They keep bringing referrals for us to teach, so the baptisms will just keep coming.

This week is the last of the transfer so we’ve got to make it extra special. I don’t know how many baptisms we’ll have, but who knows what will happen next. My companion has been in Domboshava for 6 months and he’s entering his last transfer. He kind of wants to go, but he isn’t sure because he thinks being moved for 6 weeks is pointless. This will be the end of my 5th transfer, so I’ve been on my mission about 7 months. I’ll be working on my 6th planner out of 17. I’ve still got plenty of time to serve, but I guess I’m getting there. I’m not really a greenie any more.

Last weeks numbers were trash. We were hardly in our area. Some sisters wanted to do some exchanges on Thursday and Friday, so those days were ruined. They live just too far and we had to take them back and forth.

These last few days I’ve been a little bit sick to my stomach. I think it’s the kind of nutrition I’m getting. I’ve just been eating rice, beef, chicken, and sodza. I’ve tried balancing it by buying some fruits and drinking lot of water, and it has seemed to help. My companion went through a bit of the same so we were buying these things together.

In my studies I said that I’ve been back in the BoM. I’m now in 2 Nephi and I just recently read what used to be my favorite chapter. 2 Nephi 9, it talks a lot about the resurrection. I don’t think any other book in the world describes the resurrection like the BoM does. It lays it out so plainly, and the plan for us just makes so much sense. It’s sad when I hear people don’t even believe in life after death. It’s something that’s pretty unique with our religion. I can’t recall the verse but one of my favorite verses is there too. It talks about Jesus Christ being the Gate keeper. When you are judged, no servants are hired, it’s just you and Him. It’s a really powerful scripture and I’m having some investigators and less actives read it now and it really brings the spirit.

Sorry this one is short, that’s all that happened.

President didn’t tell us how mothers day is going to work so I have no idea. It’s on a Sunday but he could tell us to call on Saturday, I don’t know. I’m kind of frustrated but don’t worry, IIMG_0915.JPG‘ll probably call you by phone on Saturday to tell you everything.

Much love,
Elder Robison