Welcome to the blog of Elder Redge Ballard!

Redge has gone from planning to fly to the Brazil MTC, to driving to the Provo MTC, to the Houston Texas Mission, and now finally he has arrived in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. We hope you'll enjoy following his adventures in sharing the restored Gospel to those he meets!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Merry Week of Christmas

Merry week of Christmas everyone!!
 Aust -  Congratulations to you and Karen on the endownment!! How exciting!! I bet that was the coolest experience for you. HOLY KRUPP at you getting married tomorrow..... That seriously blows my mind. It of course won't set in probably until I see you two together or whatever but man that is crazy to think. I'm amazingly excited for the both of you, to see where "yall" end up and what you end up doing with your life. You'll be pretty settled in in 21 months I would guess :) (Btw, isn't it ridiculous that I've been out for an eighth of my mission?! AH! That's so scary!!) I will love watching you two grow together though, I am SO happy for you two. Thanks for always being such a great example for me in my life. I have a great paved path to follow between Karen and you as well as Mom and Dad. I'll be praying like crazy for you two tomorrow :) And I'll of course be there in spirit. Good luck Brother!

 So, we'll start this letter out a little light before I talk about my normal stuff. A couple years ago Texas got the award for having the most unhealthy snack at a state fair, deep fat fried butter. A stick of butter rolled in bread crumbs, and then put on a stick. Are you kidding me? Makes me sick just thinking about it. The worst part is that people were actually buying them and eating them :D Also, there's a town in Texas called Humble, and it's pronounced Umble. And most Texans say that's how to say it, but only the town. But, in someone's sacrament talk, they said, "We as saints need to be sincere, and umble in our lives." Us non-texans couldn't help but to chuckle :D
 Well, this has been a good week. Not a whole lot of progress with investigators because everyone's either getting busy or sick with the holidays coming up. We haven't really even been able to teach Stan, and he was too sick for church, again :/ Janele's doing good. We found out more and are going to have to slow down for her, but I'm sure things willl work out fine for her. DeShaon and Sadie we haven't even been able to catch... I'm just crossing my fingers that we don't just lose them cuz we lose contact. But, luckily Hannah asked her mom if she could get baptized, and she said YES!!! We're setting a date tomorrow afternoon when we teach her and I am so so so excited to continue with her. She has a very strong desire and it's so great to see someone at that age have a desire to become better and join this church. Also, tonight at 6:00 PM our ward is going to have a mission wide fast. We're fasting that we can meet our goal (which is to double convert baptisms by this march) as well as to find FAMILIES specifically to teach, and to be converted to becoming completely obedient to this work. When President brought up this fast, he actually told us we were free to invite our families to join the fast. So, don't feel like you have to or anything (especially with the wedding and all that coming :D ) but just know that the invitation is there, tonight at 6. This week I've had the opportunity to experience a couple people trying to bash us missionaries. One guy just wouldn't stop telling us that we believed in a different Christ than the christians, and stuff like that, and another guy brought up some weird thing about where the book of Abraham came from. Anyways, you'll notice I said opportunity. At first I was taken a back at this cuz I'd never experienced it or anything, but because us missionaries stayed calm and kind, it was actually a great time to reflect upon the power of my testimony and how we don't have our testimonies based in things like (Austin and Dad'll laugh at this) "The garden of eden was in independance county Missouri." and those things. It's based soley in the fact that God has prophets on the earth today, that Christ is the savior of our souls, and that this Church is founded exactly the way that it was when Christ was on the earth. I know that these things are true, as well as the fact that Joseph Smith was a prophet, and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. This IS the true church, and I am so grateful for the opportunity to share it with people. I love you all, I am very excited to talk to you all this week! Btw, I got permission to call Christmas Eve, and I will be calling the house phone (I hope that's what yall want...) at about 8 o clock PM my time. If you want a different number called I'm sure we can swap really fast to the cell phones or whatever. If the time doesn't work, we can just stop and I'll call back or whatever we need to do. I'm sure it'll all go fine :) And I get 1 hour to talk as well. Thanks for everything family! Good luck Austin and Karen and everyone else involved with tomorrow!! Love you all so much!
-Elder Ballard
Creepy snowman face :)

Classic front porch table in apartments here.

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