Tuesday, April 28, 2015

"Winter is almost here"-Tigger Movie "To be fair the communication load is entirely on me in this [companionship]"-Phineas and Ferb "Garden [boy]"-Tinker Bell "I think I'll [stay in Mutare]. Again?"-Monsters Inc.

Or at least that is what I hear.   It has been cooling down more, even the hot days aren't too hot, but the last few days were pretty bad.   But it has cooled off somewhat and by the end of this transfer we ought to be neck deep in winter time, which will be nice.   I am so ready to be cold, or at least the equivalent of cold here in Zimbabwe.   They are saying it ought to be a really cold one for us.   We will see.

If I don't find something my companion likes to talk about, he don't talk much.   One thing I have found that he likes, baking.   We talk about it all the time, mostly because we don't have an oven that works right, so we don't really do it very often.   The oven burns everything we try to bake.   So if I don't find something he will talk with to me, then it is like Doofensmirts and Perry, I do all the talking and he just kind of walks.   Oh well, we are doing well and working hard.

Out here the only service we seem to do is that of gardening. and yard work.   Lots of it too.   Which is nice, cause I love service.   We help to prepare the land, we plant things, we water, we weed, haven't harvested yet, not the right season right now.   But we are gonna harvest at some point in time.

I am staying again in Mutare.   This is my third in Mutare, and with Elder Mandiquesse, which is nice.   We both know the area really well, and that means we can work without too much difficulty.   We get lost once in a while, mostly when we try to find new places.   Like new houses.   But we are doing well with that too.   If I had to guess this will be our last together, and maybe my last here, since after this it wont be much longer on mission.   But you never know.

We are back to being a four man house, and our district is now six people strong, we got a companionship of sisters back into the district.   So now we are gonna have more things happening out here, at least that is the hope for us.   Things are now starting to move along towards baptisms for us in Sakubva, we have a powerful investigator named Anyway and he wants to get baptized and he wants to serve a mission after he is baptized.   That is awesome, I love when that kind of thing happens.   I can't wait to see him get baptized.

My companion is a big joker.   Out here when you knock on a door the people inside call out" who is it" and if it someone we know well he will respond "Ma Porisa" which means the police.   Or when other missionaries call us he answers the phone "Hello this is the waterfall elders" cause everyone out here in mission dreams of opening Victoria Falls as a mission area.   He loves to joke around and sometimes it is hard to tell when he is being serious.   

"There is no habit, no addiction, no rebellion, no transgression, no offense small or large which is exempt from the promise of complete forgiveness"
-Boyd K Packer 

"Come now, and let us reason together saith the Lord, though your sins be as scarlet they shall be white as snow, though they be red like crimson they shall be as wool."
-Isaiah 1:18

I love the beauty of this message.   Our sins stain us red, and there is only one way to be made clean, and it is through our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ.   Through His great and atoning sacrifice we can be clean.   The savior wants to forgive us, wants us to become clean, and it only through Him that is able to be done.   I know He will forgive us as we repent, and that he joys to do so.   I know He loves us.

"I have 99 sons and one daughter, cause there's nothing creepy about that at all."
"Strange women lying in lakes, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government."
"Is a smurfs bum blue?"
"Bring forth the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch."

I love you all.  

Monday, April 20, 2015

"Did that just say grand Central station, or my aunts constipation?"-Madagascar "Good thing [we've got] a spare"-How to train your dragon "[We're] so goofy"-Extremely Goofy Movie "It's gone, it's back, it's gone"-Phineas and Ferb

Okay, so we went to Harare this past week, and when we go to Harare they hire a sprinter bus a big old omni bus that is supposed to hold some 25 people that they take us for the three to four hour drive to and from Harare.   So when on the bus, if you aren't lucky you get to listen to really irritating and really crappy Shona music that is too loud, and that you can't understand anyway.   But sometimes you catch what sounds like an English word, and it sounds like a bad word, and you think, "wait what did that just say?"   I prefer English music.

We have had a lot of tire problems out here, lots of really bad roads with really sharp rocks makes for popped tires and other problems.   People say mission prepares you for the rest of your life, so maybe I am supposed to be a mechanic, cause I have gotten really good at changing tires and that sort of thing.   I don't know, all I know is I am tired of tire punches.

So, as a District Leader I do exchanges with the members of my District.   So I was with Elder Mushala a missionary going home in a week, and we were gonna be working together in Sakubva.   So we went to get lunch.   So we were getting a Shwama, a really good chicken wrap kind of thing, and we both like Phineas and Ferb, so we are sitting there in the eating area, and we start singing some Phineas and Ferb songs, and we did the same thing walking through the area.   I realized how weird it must have looked for the people who were walking past us, singing the main title to the show, it was fun, but it was goofy.   

Anyway, the weather is really not sure what it wants to do, it will be nice and cool and rainy and then it will get hot and sunny, then it will go back and then forth and back and forth and back... and forth and back and forth, and it is really irritating.   Winter is on it's way, I can see that cause it is getting progressively cooler, and the rain is coming more and more often, which is nice, just need it to get here and stay here. 

Mostly we eat at home, and so it is usually sandwiches for me.   Everything I cook seems to come out wrong, and we don't have the tools to cook most of what I know how to cook, our oven sucks and so it is kind of stick to the messed up frying pan.   So yea, I eat, just nothing fancy.   I am feeling great, no tape worm, no nothing, just slimming down.   I have been working out in the mornings, so hopefully that will also help me slim down.   I hope so.   

We had a good week, a little low on lessons and such, two days in Harare and lots of lessons where the people weren't there, so yea.   However the good news is that our recently baptized sister was confirmed on Sunday and so she is now a full member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.   That was great.   We are working really hard in the area, and so that should make some things happen.   Transfers are this week, and so I might be leaving here pretty soon, you never know.   

"Following Christ is not a casual or occasional practice but a continuous commitment and way of life that applies at all times and in all places."
-Dallin H Oaks

When we were baptized we covenanted to "be a witness of [Jesus Christ] at all times and in all things and in all places that [we] may be in even until death" as we are taught in Mosiah by the Prophet Alma.   I know that this is true.    God expects us to live our lives in such a way that all who see us will see Him.   We are his representatives in all that we do.   I know that people are watching us, and that God wants us to put our best foot forward.   Imagine how good it will be to have someone tell us that we influenced them to do good by our example.   That would be a wonderful thing.

"You feeling lucky, punk? Easy Ironhide.   I just wanted to show him my cannons."
"Why do I get the feeling you're going to be the death of me?"
"You fail me again Starscream, get them!"
"Luck, in my day there was no such thing as luck."

Love you all.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

"It came, it finely came!"-Toy Story "Stupid [holiday] of stupidness"-Phineas and Ferb "[18]!"-Cat in the Hat "They are so adorable at that age"-Treasure Planet

"Like the wind [it] came like the wind [it] touched all and like the wind [it] was gone."   I am of course talking about rain.   For about a week we had some pretty good rain out here, not enough to undo the drought, or to make the maize grow any better then it already is, but it was enough to help us have enough drinking water and such.   And now it has "gone like a freight train" and the sun is back out on full blast.   How can that happen so often?   I don't know.

Okay, so since it is now a school's out situation lots of people are now on Holiday and are gone.   So we go to have lessons and the people are gone, and we go to contact and set lessons and the people tell us they are just there for a little bit for Holiday or they do some other stuff like that.   So the holiday out here means lots of people gone and lots of missed stuff.   It is just how it is.   

In a few days I am gonna be 18 months on mission.   With only six left.   So in the words of my great friend, Elder Merritt "We are no longer sister missionaries".   Hope non of the current/returned sister missionaries who read this don't take offense to that, it is just how we are thinking of it.   Hard to believe a year and a half have already gone by, and the next six will probably go by fast too.

So there is a great member out here, Brother Chriewo and he has the cutest little granddaughters.   They are four and two and they actually know pretty good English, but mostly they use Shona.   So he invites us over quiet often, he is planning to go to the Temple this year, so we are helping him to prepare for that, and so we were visiting with him and his granddaughters come out and start trying to talk to me, and then I tell it was my birthday a day before and they start just whispering at me in Shona, and it was so cute, but I didn't know what they said.   They are so nice, to me, and it is just great.

This week we had our first baptism here in Mutare, at least first for me.   We had a few set backs.   First there was no water in the fount, so my companion and I and our Branch Mission Leader had to use water buckets and take three hours to fill it ourselves.
Then there was no baptismal clothing to be worn by the person being baptized.   So we had to run to another chapel to get some, and then after all that we had a great baptism.   We have been working really hard to establish our teaching pool(group of people who are taking the lessons) and it is a bit of a slow process, but slow and steady wins the race.   We are moving along pretty well.

"Be the same person in the dark that you are in the light"
-Thomas S Monson

I love the simple message of this quote.   President Monson is simply saying that we ought to be consistent.   I was always told growing up that integrity is who you are and what you do when no one is watching and it is so true.   We ought to be the same person in all times and all things.   I know that we need to be the same obedient person on a Friday Night, as on a Sunday Morning.   I know that as we are obedient in all tings we can be blessed.   The Stripling Warriors in Alma were blessed and protected because they "did observe to obey every word of command with exactness" and so they were preserved from death many times, when countless others around them fell.   I know that they were obedient both on and off the field of battle, and we need to be so too.   

"I checked behind the Cyclops eye, I did, but he wasn't there."
"Look guys, it isn't a competition, but if it was I WIN!" 
"Which door? There's more then one, Sandy Claws is behind the door shaped like this."
"So the next time the Man in the Moon tells you something, believe it."

I love you all.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

"yeah, I'm [21]"-Hotel Transylvania "Schools out!"-Guitar Hero 3 "I'm so-o-o-o [trunky]"-Phineas and Ferb "It calls to [him]"-Pirates of the Caribbean

I really have to say I don't feel like I am almost 21 years old.   But come Wednesday it will have happened.   How weird it is to be that old, and still feel like such a little kid.   I find myself singing Disney Songs, and Phineas and Ferb Songs, I laugh at random movie quotes that pop into my mind and all that kind of stuff a little kid does.   Scary that I am gonna be a leader of tomorrow huh?   Yea, scares me too.

Out here in Zimbabwe the Schools have closed for a month.   They do the whole three months on, one month off thing out here for school.   I almost think that is a better program, but I really enjoy those three months off right in a row.  Anyway, lots of little kids now running around and being crazy and all that good stuff.   Lots of kids that stare at me and all that stuff, my mom used to say I would stare at her like a monkey in a zoo, now I know how that feels.  

I have to be honest, I am getting a little trunky out here.   The littlest things can set me off.   Like certain songs, or quotes will just put me off my rocker.   I am still doing the work, but like at nights, when I am board and there is nothing to do, then I am just horribly trunky.   But I suppose that is how it is.   The Longing is beginning to take its toll.

I got my package from my family for my birthday and I am waiting to open it till the day of my birthday, but a member of my district wants me to open it really badly.   It is funny how much it bugs him that I haven't yet.   He wants to see what is in it and try to get me to give him some of it.   Funny.   

This week we are planning our first baptism here in Sakubva since I got here, which will be awesome, and I am excited for it.   We also did a family fun day activity, to play games and try to bring the community together to help people to see about our faith.   Not many people came, but it was still a fun time, and we did get some contacts.   

My companion is still the same old same old.   He likes to answer the phone by saying "this is the waterfalls Elders".  

"Be not afraid, only believe. Discipleship is believing Him in seasons of difficulty when our pain and fear are calmed only by the conviction that He loves us and keeps His promises."

"When you are involved in the work of the Lord, the power behind you is always greater then the obstacles before you."
-Dallan H Oaks

I have to be honest, I have had a bit of a rough week, what with sicknesses, holiday and people not being around this has just been a little rough.   But I know that faith and trust in God will see me through, and can see all the rest of us through too.   I know that God's power is greater then the storms of life.   let us "be still and know that [He] is God".

"I don't want to know who was on the other end of that phone. It was the gophers wasn't it, no I don't want to know. Was it the gophers? No! I don't' want to know."
"Blah blah blah, science science science, Bigger!"
"Boneless white meat!"
"Can you look me in the eye, and tell me that you have this under control and this is not gonna end in a disaster?"

Love you all.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

"Just like last [P-day]"-NIghtmare Before Christmas "Filthy creatures"-Ratatoui "It's empty, see?"-Monsters Inc "[63] big ones"-Dispicable Me

Well, we do about the same thing on P-day.   Play soccer after emailing.   It isn't too bad, just wish they had a different idea once in a while about what we ought to do for fun.  Trying to figure out things to do, but not much success as of late.   That is okay, it is better then P-days in my last area.   

We found a rat in our house.   I tried unsuccessfully for about 15 minuets to kill it, but it was just too fast.   Couldn't manage to get it done, so I am not sure where it is now.   All I know is that it is nasty.   I hate those things.   Hopefully it ran away and wont come back but you never know.  

So having moved the other elders out of our house into their new house the one we are in is very empty now.   It is really sad, it feels weird to have it be only my companion and me in the house.   It is that way in most of the houses in Mutare, just two missionaries living where there used to be four.   It is soooo empty.  

Well, my birthday is coming up, and my mother sent me a package and out here you have to pay for the package to be delivered and so yea, 63 bucks on that one.   Thanks mom, I wont open it till my birthday, I promise.   I am excited to see what is in it.   

This week we had one investigator at church, and she is working towards a baptism on the 12th of April, and is showing great potential to be baptized that day.   That will be good.   She is a great person, a referral from another investigator.   We have another Baba investigator we are working with to get married and stop drinking, and that will hopefully happen so he can get baptized on the 26th of April.   That will be great, he is a good guy, and I hope it all goes well for that.

My companion has been having some health issues as of late, hopefully it will all get fixed soon, since he doesn't seem to be too happy with it.   

"As you act on a prompting and do it with love, watch as our Heavenly Father uses your willingness to act to bring about a miracle in your life and in the life of the person you care about."
-Thomas S Monson

"it is not possible for you to sink lower then the infinite light of Christ's Atonement shines."
-Jeffrey R Holland

I believe it is better to be a tender mercy then to receive a tender mercy.   I love the look on someones face when you surprise them by helping them without being asked or given anything.   I know that God wants us to serve and love our Brothers and Sisters.   I know that serving others helps us in our lives and that as we serve, we are blessed.   So go out there and find someone who needs your help and give them a hand, I promise that it will brighten their day, and yours.

"You have your order Director Fury.   Yeah, but since it is a stupid order, I've decided to ignore it."
"His name is Kirby? they left him behind? Darth Vader's Luke's father?!"
"Jarvis, are you familiar with the tale of Jonah?  I don't think it is a model you should follow sir."
"Did you just try to use the big voice on me?   Uh what were we talking about?"

I love you all.