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!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Priesthood Triplet, Presents, and... Yeah, this whole mission thing is starting to hit home...

Incredible how this new pday thing seems to make the week pass even faster... Not exactly what I'm needing haha... But, I guess this whole time and mission arriving at the end needs to happen at some point :/ Sure is weird, but I'm just super grateful for the time I do have here. 

  Yesterday was awesome in church, cuz remember that family that was baptized two weeks ago? All three of the boys received the Aaronic Priesthood! It was so cool cuz it was a deacon, a teacher, and a priest! I love seeing families like this cuz the ward really took this family in and is really helping them stay strong. The two older ones are starting seminary, it's just awesome. I was on a division, but Elder Pereira went with some members to do an FHE with them and it sounded like it went super well. We told them all to write about their experiences in the back of their BoMs, and Angela wrote one of the most amazing testimonies I've literally ever heard my entire mission... Seriously it was incredible. I'm going to film the family talking about their experiences and then I'll bring that vid home and show you guys cuz it's such a moving story to hear their side of things and how the gospel personally blessed their lives... SO incredible. This family just keeps blowing me away, they are going to do such great things in the future.

  Well, today I basically finished up the process of buying presents for everyone haha. I've always liked buying presents for people for some reason, so now I just hope that everyone likes what I got. Some of you guys sure are difficult to know what to get haha :D Now we all just need to pray that all of it survives on the plane... Seriously I will die if something breaks or gets lost haha. I'll just make sure to pack everything up as safe as possible. All'll be ok haha. Today I passed in the mission office and talked to Elder Hilton who's from my MTC group, and he's the only one from my original group that arrived at the same time cuz of visas, and I found out that out of the 5 that came here to Belo Horizonte, he's the only one that'll keep flying with me all the way to Salt Lake. It sure was weird talking to him though... I think all of us are about whacko right now cuz the fact that the mission is actually going to end is becoming more real and hitting home harder every day ya know? I dunno... Day by day, I don't really even think about it, cuz whether you have 2 weeks left on the mission or 2 weeks in the field, a day of work is done the same way. But moments like pday and whatnot sure just drive you insane cuz I'm arriving in that state where you hit your "lasts". Last pday I sent my last letters to the US, cuz from this point on, I'll arrive before any letter I send haha. This week will be my last zone conference, just crazy stuff like that. It's a really weird feeling cuz a few months back, I was scared to finish my mission cuz I don't know what it's gunna be like, but the Lord has really blessed me with feelings of peace. At one point I was sad, which is kinda where I'm at right now, but at the same time, the Lord also testifies that I have things to be done back home. I don't even know what I'm feeling really... Super crazy. But, either way, I'll just give it my all these next two weeks. I'm getting that good motivation feeling where I can now say, "Eh, I can walk faster until my legs almost fall off, cuz it's only two more weeks of arriving at the apartment half dead." It's really cool how the Lord seems to work with me, cuz I'm just trying to find the best ways possible to really endure to the end, and He's helping me find them :) Well, if pday hadn't been moved this would be my second last email home, (holy crab...) and I'm basically out of stuff to say, but hope going back to school for everyone goes great, hope that Provo treats Aust Karen and Arlee well, and just have a great week everyone! Hurrah for Israel!!!!

     -Elder Ballard

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