In Mosiah 4:11 it says… “And again I say unto you as I have said before, that as ye have come to the knowledge of the glory of God, or if ye have known of his goodness and have tasted of his love, and have received a remission of your sins, which causeth such exceedingly great joy in your souls, even so I would that ye should remember, and always retain in remembrance, the greatness of God, and your own nothingness, and his goodness and long-suffering towards you, unworthy creatures, and humble yourselves even in the depths of humility, calling on the name of the Lord daily, and standing steadfastly in the faith of that which is to come, which was spoken by the mouth of the angel.”
Well it took a while, but after 6 long transfers, and 9 long months, the time has finally come. I’m leaving the office. I have served my purpose, and I did it with all of my heart. I’ll be leaving Harare to go to a town called Kadoma about 2 hours from here, and my new companion will be Elder Blignaut. Well since I’ve been here I’ve learned a lot, and I’m grateful for being given the opportunity to serve in such marvelous capacities. It was hard at times, but I’m glad I saw it through and persevered. I’ll be re-assuming my position as zone leader in charge of a zone that just got 8 new additional sister missionaries… eish. Haha I’m sure I’ll be fine. President explained to me his decision making in to why he needs me there. Suffice it for me to say it was just my time, and President needs my leadership elsewhere. It’s a zone that has been struggling of late, my job is to give it a boost and to hopefully turn all of these mission branches where I’m serving in to a District! My zone is kind of spread, it’s between three cities (you can look them up if you want), Chegutu, Kadoma, and Kwekwe. I hope I can live up to the expectations that President has of me.
So my week has been pretty good. The Carrells came, so they’ll be taking over office duties from now on. The Assistants are back to a lot more proselyting time which is good. I really am going to miss this ward though. All of the Mexican food, and sweet, humble people that have made my missionary experience here so enjoyable. I’m going to miss the Chitima’s, and the Thomas’. Really these two families are what made my stay here such a delight. It’s a shame that I won’t be able to see them progress, but this is missionary work, no room for complaints.
One awesome experience happened last week at church. So it was fast a testimony Sunday and people were all taking turns bearing their testimony. Presiding at the meeting was Elder Dube from the Seventy! The only Zimbabwean area seventy! (And my new zone covers his hometown). Anyways at the meeting Brother Thomas got up in his new suit. He just boldly walked up their in his tennis shoes and sat in the back waiting for his turn. As he began to speak I immediately began to feel the Holy Ghost. He testified of the reality of Jesus Christ and the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon; and of how much the book, and this church has blessed his life immensely. When he closed he explained he was still learning, but he will continue learning until the day he dies. Then he closed by saying “that is my first testimony… in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen”. Everyone was just so stunned and amazed. When he took his seat Elder Dube got up to finish the meeting with his closing testimony. He called Brother Thomas and told him “I’ve been in the church for 31 years, and I’m still learning. So don’t worry Brother Thomas, we’re in this together”. Brother Thomas’ testimony was so profound, so sweet. I’ll never forget the time that I spent here.
WELL I guess you’ll have to start writing to me on Sundays again, I’m a normal missionary now haha. Not that I wasn’t a missionary before, it was just different. I can’t wait too see what the Lord has in store for me, I’ve still got some time so don’t expect any slack from me!
Much Love, Elder Robison
Well what can I say, not a lot happened this week. A lot more errands to run, and a lot more things to do to close this transfer. We had MLC last week and it was really good. We set goals for the year of 2017 and tried to see where we could improve as a mission. As a mission last year we had 1818 baptisms, which beat last years record of 1796, and we did it with half as many missionaries :). Yeah we reeaally pushed ourselves this year, and as a result, we saw some pretty great miracles. For the upcoming transfers President wants to focus on some other areas that haven’t received much attention so we should be seeing some results really soon.
Like I said it was a pretty long week, and a lot of things going on at once, but nothing really worthy of mentioning. After my long week, it was Friday night, after countless hours of standing up or driving, we had a break. After pondering about the week in the office, I turned to my companion and said, “we need to go and see someone”. He said “who do you want to see?” After calling about 3 different investigators or recent converts they all said they were busy and would have to wait until next week. I was a little bit disappointed, but then I turned to one last phone number in my phone. I turned to my companion and said “what about Vanessa? Perfect.” So I called her then what do you know she was very available and really wanted to see us. She was baptized clear back in June, and has been coming to church ever since, but sometimes leaves the country so she hasn’t been around for some time. In our previous appointment with her we challenged her to read the entire Book of Mormon in a year, kind of like you guys! To our disappointment we found she hadn’t been reading at all. So we took the whole hour with her just reading from the Book of Mormon. As we were reading questions arose, and I could just see the light coming from her eyes as she read. The chapter had answered many questions that she had, and reading with her gave her a new spark and desire to continue on her own. I’m grateful for the Book of Mormon and the power that it has. I’m even more grateful to be a witness everyday of the power and influence that it has in others lives.
So it was a long week, but it ended on a good note. Actually all of the stress and work has chipped away like 2Kg’s which I’m so grateful for, but it’s not the healthiest way to get it done. I know this work to be true, and I’m ever thankful for the experiences that I’ve been given, and for the light that He has given me in this spiritual journey
“For the time cometh, saith the Lamb of God, that I will work a great and a marvelous work among the children of men; a work which shall be everlasting, either on the one hand or on the other—either to the convincing of them unto peace and life eternal, or unto the deliverance of them to the hardness of their hearts and the blindness of their minds unto their being brought down into captivity, and also into destruction, both temporally and spiritually, according to the captivity of the devil, of which I have spoken.”
My oh my am I tired. So it was a lot of driving this week, plus a lot of things to do to get ready for the upcoming transfer. Out of the blue President decides that 3 new areas need to be opened and we need houses for all three, plus two more houses for already existing areas. My objective was to find and prepare all of these houses before the upcoming transfer on the 17th of January. Impossible?! Maybe! But I’m just going to do my best and see how it goes.
The whole process just takes forever. I have to find a house then get the landlord to agree to our lease so that we can start leasing it as soon as possible. Then we have to furnish the place and make sure everything is in place for the missionaries to move in. Finding these houses also included a lot of driving! More road trips! On Wednesday we drove all the way down to Kwekwe to see about renting 2 houses. Well it was a total mess, but as soon as we were finally able to come to agreements with the landlords our work was done. My companion actually completed law school before he came on a mission so that really helped. Then I told him how much of a Monopoly master I was and he just said “your’re on” haha. Yeah doing this business has really opened my eyes. After our trip we returned to the office the next day and Elder Selcho just said, “I don’t know how ya did it, to be your age and doing these things really astounds me”. It actually astounds me as well because it has really caught my attention. Although I didn’t always know it, real estate has really peaked my interest. I dunno maybe it’s something to think about for when I get home.
Well unfortunately I have to meet with a landlord NOW and have to take care of a whole lot of other stuff today, so my pday is kinda wasted. It’s okay though, business keeps me happy. As long as I’m doing the right thing I’m all good. I hope I got to answer all of your questions when I skyped on Sunday. I really loved the card board cut out! Please keep that for me haha.
Anyways I’m sorry this email is short, but duty calls. Hope you have a good week, and a happy new year!
‘Tis the day before Christmas! Christmas isn’t quite as big here which is kinda sad, but oh well. After last years Christmas it’s not like I could expect much. But this year’s Christmas is a little better! I actually got quite a number of gifts from office staff, investigators, members and contractors! And my package came! I was sooo happy! Last year I treated my self with a can of soup, this year that’s gonna change. I’ve really gotten past feeling about Christmas though, I mean I’ve already missed it once. This year is a little easier for me, last year it hit me hard.
Nothing really interesting happened this week. President was out of town conducting interviews and we were just preparing the office for people to Skype home. This time around we have a lot of Americans in the field so we’ll have a lot of people who will want to Skype.
Yesterday I was so over excited! Minutes after my package came I turned around the corner to my desk I saw a big present full of food for me! Thank you Elder a Sister Selcho! I just threw myself in to Elder Selcho’s office and gave him a big hug. I’m just so full of GOOD right now, I feel like I could just buy someone anything. I really should give some gifts in return, or even share mine because we got waaaay too much chocolate. I can really start to feel that difference between giving and receiving gifts from people. I have found that there is just as much, if not more joy from giving gifts rather than receiving them. Recently in my scripture studies I’ve really tried to find the meaning of the word joy and examples of people feeling that “joy”. I’ve tried to understand how I can feel that joy, and what I can do to have that joy with me always. I found so many heartwarming stories, and I so badly wanted to find out “what makes me happy”. Over my last 15 months of being on a mission I’ve found that I’m most happy when I lose myself in serving others, and making others smile. When I share our special message about Jesus Christ I love the presence of the Spirit, and the familiarity of that feeling in others hearts. I loved lighting the world! It was a special experience, and it’s one that I’ll never forget.
“Fear not: for I bring you good tidings of great JOY”
“These things have I spoken unto you, that my JOY might remain in you, and that your JOY might be full.”
“And for this cause ye shall have fulness of JOY; and ye shall sit down in the kingdom of my Father; yea, your JOY shall be full, even as the Father hath given me fulness of JOY; and ye shall be even as I am, and I am even as the Father; and the Father and I are one;”
And just for the heck of it, I’ll just share with you my favorite scripture…
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
So last week was a pretty crazy one for sure, and it started with more Christmas Devotionals. On Wednesday Bindura and Marimba zones had their devotional, then Thursday it was for Harare East and Mutare. Now Mutare was originally supposed to come to Harare for their devotional, but literally only the day before President was inspired to do something else. We changed all of our plans to head to Mutare which is about 250km away, and brought Harare East zone with us. After only one missionary vehicle accident arriving to Mutare we had our Christmas devotional, and I and my companion and two sisters had a piece! We sang “Come, Lord Jesus Come” from “Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World”. I brought my guitar and President really enjoyed it.
After the devotional the real fun began, we lit up Mutare! The real reason we brought everyone to Mutare was so that we could just flood the streets with flyers and pass along cards. The perception and image of the church in Mutare is really poor, President just felt so motivated to go down there and flood this light to the streets of Mutare. In fact he was so motivated he even lead the way haha. As our group of like 50 missionaries walked down the streets together President was stopping every Kombi and passenger in sight, telling them about the church. The objective of this trip was to get the idea of this being a “satanic church” out of their heads. So I made sure that every conversation I had, I used the name Jesus Christ and testified of his Divinity and love for all mankind. It was sooo much fun too see the work of God unfold in such a beautiful place.
The next day we did what President calls “Hit the streets!’ in another part of Mutare, and we had extra forces! We brought ANOTHER zone from Harare to join with us this day and we just walked every street we could telling people about the church. At the devotional President stated that we are “at war”. So we geared up and gave it every thing we had.
I and my companion actually did something rather funny. We saw a maaaasssive wedding taking place at a conference center. The main event was a loud sermon being given by a feminine evangelist. We just looked at each other and said “we have nothing to lose”. So I just confidently walked in to the complex and started giving people pamphlets haha. By the time I reached the doors to the main center where the preaching was happening I started telling the ladies who worked there about Jesus Christ. They were so confused! They were like “uh can’t you hear we’re listening to the gospel?” So I just boldly testified about Christ and his restored church, then they as I tried forcing my way in they just kicked me out hahahaha. SO SICK! I don’t think I had ever felt so alive! I think they were kind of angry that I would be confident enough to do something like that. Well I’m not ashamed, nor am I afraid of the message we share. This gospel is centered on Jesus Christ and he is our Savior. I love Him with all of my heart and I feel so privileged to testify of Him every day. Much like what Moroni says in Moroni 1:3 “I will not deny the Christ”. Maybe barging in to a wedding wasn’t the best idea, but I think what I was trying to accomplish was to prove to myself that the message that I share can be shared with anyone, never fearing and never doubting.
So that was my week, full of adventure! The drive was long and the work took place on Saturday so that’s why I wrote to you today.
Light the world!
21 Verily, verily, I say unto you, this is my gospel; and ye know the things that ye must do in my church; for the works which ye have seen me do that shall ye also do; for that which ye have seen me do even that shall ye do;
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