Tuesday, December 27, 2011

WAHOOOOOO YAY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (This is the picture of the computer screen while we were skyping.  Brady always has to pull a face!)
Isn't life just the greatest?!  I love life, I love my family, I really love being on a mission and I love my Savior Jesus Christ.  What else can i even say?  Its just a good day :)  Thanks all of you for what you do to make my day. 
So talking to all yous guys on sunday was awesome.   Im so glad we got to skype cuz the funnest part was being able to see you all and your faces and how much you've grown-some more than others and some growing up and some growing wider ;)  It was awesome cuz for a few minutes I was just there, with the family. I was in on the family conversations and the jokes and it was just alot of fun.  I love yous guys!  ps i definitely approve of the name Brody for Blake and Karli's baby. It's cool that it is a combination of me and Brock's name (and Cody too... right?)  Im super jealous that you are all going to that Michael Jackson Cirque show in Vegas, but at least I'm not missing a cruise like we did to Blake ha. The presents were all great and I have tons of sweets to tide me over for the next little while. 
Alright now to my week.  Not gonna lie, it was not the best week we had. Lots of people canceling appointments and lots of distractions aka christmas so not a whole lot got done.  But one of our investigators-D is getting baptized on Jan 8th so that is legit!  We are trying to get his brother to get baptized the same day but he is a little unsure.
I also decided that I live with "Elder Calhoun" from the movie The Best Two Years.  Our greenie Elder S is like him in some ways and its hilarious.  Every night we come home and he is bursting with excitement to tell us EVERYTHING that happened to him that day ahaha its the best.  He is really good at spanish already and is a good missionary. 
This week Elder A and I went to a concert.... which im pretty sure it was supposed to be a funeral but was mostly a concert haha.  A lady in our ward who is pretty inactive had her mom pass away and her other church (which is a born again christian church) did the funeral for her but she invited us and a few other members in our ward to the funeral.  It was ridiculous.  After the service we were all eating lunch in the cafeteria they have in the church and we were sitting next to one of the pastors and we started just having a nice chat asking him about himself and how he became a pastor and then he started asking questions about our church and then quoting the bible to tell us we were wrong in believing one thing or the other.  But his arguements were so hollow and i could've said so many things to prove him wrong in what he was saying but I don't bash.  Some missionaries do it and get into it but not me.  I know what i would say to prove them wrong but its useless cuz they are soo illogical that logic goes right over their heads.  So instead, Elder A and I just smiled and bore some solid witnesses of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith and he didn't know what to say so he condemned us both to Hell and got up and left.  It was fantastic hahaha I think i had too much fun with that one.
Lets see what else.... Christmas eve we had a zone get together and gift exchange and then we went carolling at the Old Folks home where we do service every week playing hangman and pictionary with the guys.  It was just like old times going singing on sunday nights in St. George with all my friends.  They were all very sweet and appreciative.  Then we proceeded to the B's house for your traditional christmas dinner... NOT haha we had King Crab and shrimp cocktail.  Nothing is ever normal in the B home but thats how i like it!

Christmas day we woke up and opened presents and then made a Huge breakfast.  Then went to church for an hour and 4 investigators came that have never come to church before and who we've only talked to over the phone so that was cool.  Hopefully we can start teaching two of them -the other two we are sending to the university elders in Cambridge.  We dinner at R and R's house and they actually made a traditional christmas dinner of ham and what not.  It was so good.  I love those two families so much.  I don't know how i got so lucky being able to teach them and bring them to this gospel. They are so solid!  Then I called my family and that was that.  Christmas is kinda bitter sweet cuz its Christmas and awesome and all that but it comes and goes so fast.  Oh and no snow on christmas!  I was so looking forward to a legit white christmas but Nope.  maybe next time.

Well peeps this is a beautiful time of the year.  Time to make some new years resolutions. So set some goals and go about actively accomplishing them.  I have lots of stuff I still have to do and lots to become before I go home next year.  I love you all.  Be good. 


     Elder Brady Johnson

Monday, December 19, 2011

Yup, I love Christmas!

Well like I predicted, these last few days have been pretty darn crazy. First off, How is Christmas only 6 days away? Where did the time go? I wish I could spend the holiday with you all but duty calls :)  Just so you know, I am loving it out here! 
So thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday all involved some sort of time spent planning/organizing the area.  Like I told you, we took over the Sisters' area and so now we have the whole area and ward to ourselves.  That means we are super busy for the next little while.  Its been crazy trying to take the two area books (each set of missionaries in an area have what we call an area book that holds all the teaching records, progress records and just lots of records.  *if you have further questions about area books please refer to the nearest RM to you)  and make it into one clean, nice, organized and functioning Area book of Champions haha.  Im pretty proud of myself at how organized I am becoming. Still not a perfectionist, by any means, but I like things to look nice.  Plus Im not only organizing for myself and Elder A but for all the future missionaries that will come to Revere.  Its taken alot of time but it will be worth it. 
Wednesday after emailing, we went down to Boston to Quincy Market and did some christmas shopping and it was so much fun!  Oh and ps it finally decided to get cold here :(  haha but no worries, I've got my thermals!  
Thursday Elder P came home with a brand new greenie! He is so cute!  haha jk but he is a cool guy and totally green :) But i love it! I want my own greenie.  His name is Elder S from Nevada.  He is just super fired up like most greenies straight from Home Base aka MTC. 
Friday...stuff happened, I know it but just can't remember haha.  We made a green breakfast for our new roommate and it was so cool.  Green pancakes, green eggs and ham, green smoothies, and green jello.  Aren't we just the best roommates?  Oh and we had district meeting and now and Im still the district leader.  Boy have the dynamics changed a ton in this district over the months.
Saturday we went to two parties both with investigators! Thats whats up.  B had us over for his daughters birthday party along with his whole family.  It was a bit awkward but hey, what's a mission without awkward moments?  His mom actually talked to us and was saying she was so shocked but pleased at how much he has changed in the last few months.  She introduced us to her younger son and pretty much wants us to do the same thing to him haha.  Both of the guys came to church on sunday and had a good time.  That makes 3 weeks in a row for B!  it really has been amazing to see him changing.  He has become a good friend and I hope he will someday get baptized.  The 2nd party was an investigator family that the sisters were working with wanted to do something nice for someone at Christmas and so they had a member in our ward who is single and living alone and lost his mother earlier this year over to their house and they bought him a present and we kinda just had christmas with him. It was really awesome.  That family is super solid.   Im excited to further work with them. 
Sunday was a wonderful day!  We taught a new investigator because he was meeting with the bishop cuz he wants to go to byu and then he met with us cuz he wants to know more about the church.  It was a way solid lesson and he is very interested in everything.  Too bad we will probably have to transfer him to the university ward in cambridge but thats ok.  Church was amazing because we had 6 investigators at church and this sunday was the main christmas program. And let me tell you, this ward has sooooo much talent!  There were lots of musical numbers and few speakers and the spirit was so strong.  I feel like they should do that way more often in church ha.  At church our dinner for that night cancelled but someone else offered to have us over so we were saved!  We ended the night by going over to the M's house along with a couple of other families and acted out the Nativity!  It was alot of fun and there were little children all over the place.  Oh and they had some non member friends who we got to talk to and maybe more will come of that :)
So ya.  Things are going quite splendidly.  I can't complain really.  I love it out here.  Someone asked me today while in the store if I liked it out here and my reply was "yes" of course but then i thought about it, and you know what, I really do love it out here!  Ya it definitely not Utah and it is super crazy and the driving is insane and people are weird ha but I really love it out here.  More and more I find myself thinking that I could see myself pulling "a Blake and Karli" and move out here after i get my bachelors and try and go to Harvard Business school.  I have connections already so who knows haha.  I also love this holiday and season.  I love Christmas and I love it because of the closeness I feel with my savior.  Gifts really don't mean as much to me this year.  I feel like I have really been able to focus on our Savior and His birth and I am so happy!  Christ is the Lord.  Praise His name forever.  He is Wonderful.  The counselor.  The mighty God and the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.  I love you all and am so grateful for your examples in my life.  MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

     Elder Brady Johnson

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Who's up for round 6?

Yup thats right, Im staying for my 6th transfer here in Revere!  Crazy stuff.  T- Texts were insanely suspensful and nerve wracking but its all over and there are a million changes.  Elder A and I stay the same cept for one minor detail, The Sisters are being taken out of our ward and moved to a different one.  So that means We are taking over the whole ward and area.  That means we take all their investigators and members they have been working with.  Its gonna be a crazy next few weeks but im excited. I feel like the reason they took out a pair of missionaries is becuase our ward has been doing so well that the mission pres thinks they can be covered by just one pair of missionaries.  The ward members are sad to see them go, and so are we, but now we are going to be super busy which i love!  So i will be celebrating christmas and my year mark here :)  Im happy about the results and look forward to combining these areas.  Im still the district leader too.  So before i forget, Mom don't forget to send me everyones christmas cards. Also, I can skype again this christmas and so i will probably do it around 4-6pm your time on sunday. 
Ok so now to answer some random questions, The weather here is so weird.  We had a record high november and so far its been between 40-60 in december which is apparently unusual. So i haven't frozen yet.  but today is cold.  I can't believe that blake and Karli are gonna have a boy! thats awesome.  Name him Brady Duh!  Thats an easy one :) or call him Stephan (brock and the Dhills soccer team know what im talking about) or call him Bill.  Thats all i got. 
Brock i feel for you man, the ACT is a tough one but watch, you will get like a 33 or something cuz you are just that smart. and plus, since when were you in choir? how come no one ever tells me anything?  Stacy, you are gonna be a ballroom dancing machine! You will have to teach me, cuz we all know its not cool when mom tries to make us learn hahah just kidding of course :)  No but seriously, i really want to do ballroom when i get back. Don't ask me where it came from cuz i don't know. 
So a month ago i was at my heaviest and i was 197lbs, so close to 200 but then i decided i was sick of stuffing myself and making myself eat more so i just stopped and went back to my normal eating habits and in two weeks i lost 12lbs haha isn't that crazy?  I try and still study khmae every day and i speak it alot to Elder A but he hardly ever speaks back to me in it.  I'm really really good at reading and comprehension but speaking fluency is a bit of a challenge for me.  I can say what i want to for the most part, its just slow.  Hopefully i will get transferred to providence next transfer cuz there is tons of khmae work to do there. And no, we never use our khmae these days cept when we go to the S family each week. But brother S started coming to church again and so i sit next to him through the classes and translate some stuff so thats fun.
Well our investigators are doing good.  Now that we have all the sisters' people our investigators pool tripled haha ya the sisters were on fire this last transfer and now we get everything. Its kinda nice.  We now have 4 people with a baptismal date in january so like i said before, we will be extremely busy.  I still don't know much about our new investigators but after this week I'll tell you about them.  G and R still have some issues but we still go over and we are preparing G for baptism. 
B is doing awesome!  He came to our ward christmas Party on saturday(which by the way was really awesome.  I was impressed.  The members who were in charge of it really out did theirselves.  The elders quorum had to do a dance/skit thing while the audience sang "Up on the Housetop" and they got us missionaries to join in and somehow i was in a santa suit dancing around the whole performance haha).  B came to the party all dressed up in his white shirt and tie that we bought him and he was clean shaven.  He stayed the whole time and really liked it. Our members were awesome with him and really made him feel comfortable.  That night we asked him if he wanted to come to church and if we should get a ride and he was like, "oh i don't know, we'll see what happens." The next day he comes walking into church with a huge grin on his face and said, "Bet you didn't think i was coming, did ya?" He is really progressing.   Oh funny story, we went over to his house one night and we watched a few mormon.org videos and then went to the kitchen and found that his daughter had taken all of his cigarettes out and snapped them in half haha then elder A told him that it was a sign from God to stop smoking.  but yep he is doing well and he told us that he had prayed alot that we wouldn't get transferred ha.  He is such a good guy.
Well family, thats all I got for right now.   I just want to let you all know that the longer I've been on a mission, the more evident it is to me the importance of serving a mission and that It is absolutely the #1 best thing in the whole wide world that a guy like me could do at this point in my life.  It is honestly just essential.  19-21 yr old boys HAVE to go on missions.  They just have to.  I am totally convinced that this work is true.  That this church is true.  I feel so close to my savior and I'm so grateful for this season and this time to celebrate Him.  I miss you all but I am loving it out here.  Make sure you all take some time to sit back and reflect about Christ.  He is the way the Truth and the Light.
Have a lovely week!

     Elder Brady Johnson

Monday, December 5, 2011

Hey everybody!  I am so happy right now! things are just wonderful.  Life is great, I've got the best family and friends in the world (well they could be better if they wrote letters more ;), things are going good and I love being a missionary!  Yes I did see the Christmas devotional last night but missed parts of it cuz some random guy called us saying that he had got a card from us a long time ago and wants to come to church and meet with us. Cool huh? haha  
Ok so now for why I am so happy.  Well it all has to do with Sunday but it has been something in the process for the last 6 months and it all finally came to yesterday.  First off, we've been really focusing on the member missionary lessons this transfer, more than others and we've had some really good families take the lessons and have good experiences with it.  One family set a date to find someone for us on dec. 3 and they did it! and we will be teaching them this week or next!  Then in church we had 3 members get up and bear testimony on missionary work mentioning us and the member missionary lessons and all the cool things they've learned and all the cool experiences they've started to have.  There was a definite excitement about missionary work in the air.  Also, B came to church! His first time and he stayed the whole time and liked it.  G also came.  We also got to watch the christmas devotional like I mentioned and got that random referral and then a member called saying he was out doing visits with the elders quorum and they had just been in the missionary spirit and contacted some lady on the street and talked about the gospel and she is way interested!  Its finally happening! Our Ward is becoming a missionary ward!  Im so stoked!  Its so awesome and it has been alot of work but I think it is now self sustainable.  im just sad cuz I'll probably get transferred next week and not get to be here for all of the success.  But oh well, thats life right? Im just ready to go do the same thing in a new ward.
So speaking of transfers, the texts come on saturday and that means that I wont write til wednesday next week.  That also means that you should start sending things to the mission home starting monday the 12th cuz i have no idea what will happen. 
We get to go to the temple on tuesday with President and Sister Evans and our zone and Im way excited!
Well thats all i got time for but just know that i love you all and make sure to follow Pres. Uchtdorf's counsel of not getting caught up in trying to have the picture perfect christmas, cuz most likely, its not gonna happen.  So don't be caught up in the stress and worry of trying to make everything perfect but just focus on the sublime and joy of this season and remember Christ.  We are so blessed!  Don't you just love this time of year?! its impossible not to be happy when you are so focused on what we have been given and on Christ.  I love you guys!  Have a wonderful week!

     Elder Brady Johnson