Monday, July 30, 2012

2012-07-30 3 Spiritual Experiences I Had This Week

Random Culture Note - They have scones here!!!!!

3 Spiritual Experiences I had this Week

As I think about my letters (every blue moon when I have time to think) I realize that I don´t share nearly enough of my spiritual experiences. The mission is like a mine field in Africa, you almost can´t take a step without getting a life changing experience . . . except these are life changing experiences for the better.

One thing I really miss from home is late night doctrinal chats with my parents. I would come home late and almost always one of them would be in the front room reading something spiritual. Sometimes I would sit down and listen to them. One of the stories my dad told me made all the difference in a lesson I had with a less active ex bishop. I shared a scripture and a story about an ex missionary who made a mistake twice and felt he could not repent, but his bishop explained that the atonement is infinite and, when properly applied, covers mistakes like that. I was really surprised when the bishop started crying at the end of the lesson and shared what he needed to do. I know that we are prepared to serve a mission in ways we don´t even know.

While moving to the new pension, I had to repack and unpack everything. While moving my things, I found a plaque of my brother´s that he either gave me or I stole. (I can´t remember and it´s better to apologize then to ask?) The wonderful, amazing thing about this plaque is that it has the picture of my brother Adam on the back (see the first picture.) A day afterwards I went to my district leader’s area for a day. That day we went to contact a reference. The lady said that she had never before accepted visits from different churches before, but because she has recently lost two of her sons in less than a year she was feeling the need to know more. I was able to pull off my plaque and show her the picture of my brother and testify that I know that there is more after this life and that families can be together forever. There are no accidents in this work.

One of the best things about the mission is that my prayers have grown so much and I am listening more. I have started keeping a pen by my side every night when I pray and I make goals for the next day about what I will study and attitudes I will try and have throughout the day. One night this week I was upstairs alone looking at the beautiful picture of Jesus Christ we have in our pension. I held the painting in my hands and imagined having a personal interview with the Lord. I felt in that moment so much love from the Lord. I know that he is taking me and transforming me into a better servant. I know that this is his work and that I am where I need to be. Peace like that is worth any price.

I love you all and hope you have a great week! Especially my Grandma Ball who celebrated her birthday last week! I love you Grandma!

*Elder Taylor Ball*

Brother's Missionary Name Plaque


Elder Gillis and I made BBQ Chicken Pizza!!! 
Take that world!!! Me 1 World 0

Monday, July 23, 2012

2012-07-23 An Announcement

Random culture note - The emo thing to do here is to tattoo a tear onto your face.

An Announcement.
An announcement. These words always make me think of my parents gathering us together to tell us my mom was pregnant. I think the word announcement has become synonymous to me new member to the family. I guess you might say I have three of those right now, and two on the way. It’s an exciting time, but also a really busy time. I know it´s not Christmas, but here is a description of the newest members of my life.

1 - A New Apartment. We moved out! We have the nicest apartment in the mission now. We have two floors, a backyard, a large kitchen, a front room as big as our old apartment, and upstairs study rooms. It is very nice and we are enjoying it immensely.

2 - A New Shower. We also got to install a new shower that has a tank like they have back home. Our water comes out SUPER hot. It’s wonderful.

3 - Elder Gillis. I guess he is not all that new, we have been together a month now, but I really haven´t had time to write about him. He is super hyper all of the time and we get along well. He has a little over a year in the mission field and we work really well together. We are pretty much DOmiNAtING our district. Our goals for this week were to get the same numbers as the district last week. We work super hard and are pretty much running all day. It´s wonderful.

and the 2 new members are two new missionaries who are coming to our area! Well, I gotta go!

The Gospel is true and I love you!

*Elder Taylor Ball*

1 playing monopoly this pday! Super fun

2 me pretending to kill our secretary with a machete I found in the office

3 me making a face with crazy hair¿ haha

Monday, July 16, 2012

2012-07-16 Elder House

Random Culture Note - Alfajors are little brownie like things that are dipped in chocolate. Really good.

Elder House

This week my companion was sick, so we called up the president’s wife who told us to go to the offices. We went to a private hospital that was very nice. Everyone was wearing official uniforms and looked all spiffy, except the doctor that my companion saw, who was pretty much like Dr. House. It was pretty cool though; the doctor was in jeans and was chewing these leaves that everyone was addicted to. We laughed about it after.

Elder Gillis and I are working really hard. Our new pension is really big. We get meals every day. And next week I will actually have time to write and not be in a cyber where I am worried about virus . . . so I will send pictures to!

The gospel is true and I love you!

*Elder Taylor Ball*

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

2012-07-10 This Week

I am alive! I was moving. So President gave us a few minutes to write to you . . . I have pictures but I forgot the cord. Our new apartment is wonderful!!! I love you!!

Monday, July 2, 2012

2012-07-02 Comics, Baptisms, and Apartments – Oh My!

Random Culture Note - So we found some cereal that tastes like peanut butter and honey . . . different.

Comics, Baptisms, and Apartments - Oh My!

So these last two weeks were amazing and they went by super fast! I exchanged Elder Gallardo for Elder Gillis, a missionary from Layton with a little over a year in the mission. I had a Baptism too! And we ate Chinese food. Not bad for two weeks of the fastest two years.

Baptism - So two weeks ago I had the opportunity of baptizing a girl. The cool part about this baptism was that three years ago my cousin Melody helped reactivate her dad and baptize her mom . The baptism almost didn´t happen. A lot of last minute drama, but everything worked out in the end. It was different to be the one baptizing. I said the prayer perfectly, but later while giving a blessing, I ended ´´in the name of the father . . . ´´ I quickly corrected myself, but it was funny.

Apartment - So we have been working hard this week to find a bigger and better apartment. Because 2 more elders are coming to Santa Ana!!! We found a beautiful apartment and we´ll be moving in this week if the president approves it.

Well . . . The end of transfers was last week, so here are the funnies for the last 6 weeks . . .

Deer in the Headlights - While teaching a family, their 2 year-old son just started stating at me. And he stood there frozen for the entire lesson. I could almost read his thoughts . . . He has red hair? What is he???

Pardon my Planet - As we pass by, a kid runs screaming, ´´Mom, the Police! The Police!´´

Frank and Earnest - Two words, Casado - married and Cansado - tired. While walking to the church one day, I told the bishop he looked casado.

Baptism - Augustina told us that she was afraid of the water. I told her not to worry because I am a lifeguard.

For Better or For Worse - When someone asked me (in Spanish) if I speak Spanish, I told them no.

Family Circus - To get a kid interested in reading the Book of Mormon we acted out a battle in Alma with his toy soldiers.

*Elder Taylor Ball*

Spiritual thought - I learn by what I hear . . . feel . . . and see. When I learn, I write it down and live it. - Richard G. Scott. Remember to keep a journal!


Elder Gillis and I eating Chinese food

Our new (I hope!) apartment