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!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

New President and a new attitude!!!

Pretty insane seeing how fast a year passes when you have checkpoints like holidays... Seems like just yesterday I was looking out the window at 7 Lagoas wishing that fireworks would randomly start going off :P But oh well, glad to hear that the parade was... the parade :) Happy fireworks tonight!

The chapel here
    This week was finally the swap between President Parrella and our new President Fortunato! Gotta say that it was like one of the weirdest things ever. In this mission you don't necessarily see the president all that much unless you've got zone conference or something, but it was the weirdest thing how on Saturday when the swap happened, you could just feel like a new authority enter into the mission. The last time I talked to Pres. Parrella he seemed super sad poor guy... He was trying to act normal but you could just hear the bummed out sound in his voice. Probably is SO weird to leave the mission after 3 whole years... He was an amazing president though, it was SO inspired the way the Lord put me in this mission, largely because of him. I learned SO much during these past 18 months. With President Fortunato, he's an amazing guy as well. I've only talked to him on the phone until now, but he seems so amazing. The mission leaders passed a counsel from Pres Fortunato onto all of us to study a certain chapter in Moroni, and it was incredible how even though he's only been here a few days, the mantle of authority is already falling on his shoulders, cuz the chapter was exactly what I was needing.
   Mom you asked about how the works been going, and I'll be sincere and say that this last month or so was one of the most difficult ones since I've been out here. I think one of the things that made it so tough was that I feel like since I've had so much experiences and time to learn, that I should just be doing better and better and better, but that's not what happened. In Sion and here in this area, it was just that thing of every single time when someone was about to be baptized, or would go to church for the first time, something ALWAYS came up and ruined everything. We'd been trying to work our best and hardest, but it seemed like we were just spinning out on our "wheels" and weren't going anywhere. It was definitely a huge series of lessons, and I'm a lot lot more humble from all of it. Like I said though, President Fortunato was very inspired in his chapter that he gave us.
   Reading in chapter 7 of Moroni, I learned 2 really important lessons. 1, that miracles only cease to happen if WE don't let them happen. Miracles require faith, and without knowing I was letting my faith slip a little, which in turn was preventing the Lord to make miracles happen. Basically this taught me that it's not just a thing of luck if the work will go forth, it's something that totally depends on me, and I just made the decision that miracles will happen. Monday we found 2 new investigators, and yesterday we found another 5 :) The Lord is wonderful isn't he? My time is about to run out so I'll tell the other lesson next week, but just know that this was my turning point and that there are great and marvelous things ahead in these next few months!!! I love this mission with all my heart... I can't believe how privileged I am to be here and being part of such a marvelous work. I love you all tons, thanks for all you do and HURRAH FOR ISRAEL!!!!
    -Elder Ballard

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