Monday, August 31, 2015

The GOSPEL is the Best!

Area:  Kearney, Missouri  
Companion:  Elder Hansen 


Life is good, diesel trucks are awesome, and the gospel is the best! The Savior is always there and that is where true happiness lies.

Yes, the diffuser is the best thing ever!  I use it during studies and at night when I am sleeping.  Our apartment smells fantastic and everyone loves coming here because it smells so good!  We met this lady yesterday who is the sister of a member out here who is a big oil geek.  She posted a picture on Instagram of us holding oils and tagged me I think.  I told her to tag you as well!  So take a peak at it and see if you can find it.  She said she knows Kim's name as well.

This week we had a lot of miracles happen!  We were able to teach Abigial and she is loving the message that we bring.  The Bishops daughter is playing a huge role in her conversion and it is fantastic to see a 15 year old girl with such a strong testimony and desire to share the gospel.  Timothy dropped us last night through a 5 page text.  That was great to get... Not!  But, such is life and we'll continue to go on.  The seed is planted and the record is here in the mission.  One of these days he will come right along.  Some amazing news as well is that we were talking with a relative of Dillon (recently baptized with Elder Anderton and myself) and she said Dillon's cousin want to hear what we have to say!  We went over for dinner and this guy named Keegan, who is a body builder and does muscle competitions or something like that... All I know is that he is super jacked!  Wants to start listening to us and wants to read the Book of Mormon.  I don't think Dillon realizes the amount of impact he has had on his family and all those around him.  We have a second lesson with Keegan on Tuesday!

Bishop Walker is a truly inspired man.  This week at church the whole theme was on home teaching and visiting teaching.  That is one thing that is hard to help wards with out here is getting them all seeing their families and why that is important.  Bishop stood up in sacrament and gave an amazing talk and bore such powerful testimony on home teaching and visiting teaching and then did something that I have never seen or even heard of before.  He called off the rest of church and had everyone go get their new routes for visiting and sent them all out to go do their visits.  I think that gave everyone a wake up call on how important it is to go and visit your families and that they truly do need to have someone reach out to them on a consistent basis.

That's about all the happenings over here in Missouri!  The fall weather is inching its way ever so slowly but I can feel it coming.

Love you all so much!

Elder Shoemaker

Monday, August 24, 2015

God's Time Table...

Area:  Kearney, Missouri  
Companion:  Elder Hansen

Alrighty, well by the time that I get home everyone is going to be married!  Congratulation Mattie and Mitch!  

Happy 28 years married Mom and Dad!  I can't believe you are that old! ;-). Looks like a fun celebration with the tubing and what not.  Some good ole family time beats everything.

We had a fantastic week!  Yes, I did burn a shirt.  It was so trashed... Like a lot of my shirts and it was time to retire the shirt.  I have some photos for you I will send.  

We had nice oven fire this week too!  (From the perspective of Elder Hansen). "Friday morning the other Elders came over to plan some of the Ward party stuff with us and we made them lunch. I threw some chicken in the oven and later we threw the pizza box in there too. Well, after I saw smoke shooting through the burner coils on the stove we realized something was happening. We opened the oven and Mount St. Helen decided to roll out...with smoke and all the effects. We pulled out the pizza box, like firefighters saving a helpless kitten, and flames were slowly devouring the bottom of the box. Elder Shoemaker was quick on the scene and started to blow out the flames (don't worry Mom, they weren't big, the adjectives are just for effects). He flipped the pizza onto another pan, and put it back into the oven as we tried to clean the embers off of the vinyl floor. Whew, disaster avoided? It's not over yet! We went back to our planning and we realized later something was burning. We pulled the pizza out and it was too late, there was no hope. The bottom of the pizza was as black as Jay Z, but we avoided certain death thanks to quick movements of Elder Shoemaker, the HERO."

This week the Vogan family dropped us out of the blue through a text.  That was a big bummer!  But, we have been blessed in so many other ways I just have no room to complain.  Besides, no one likes a complainer!  We worked so hard this week to find 2 new investigators which was our goal.  We had so much to do day to day that some days we had 1-2 hours of proselytizing time.  We worked so hard with the time that we were given but to no reward of investigators.  Last night at 9:30pm right before accountabilities we got a message from the Bishops daughter that someone she has been working with wants to take the lessons!  Her name is Abigail.  We had a ward party this last Saturday and then a temple grounds tour.  Abigail came to that and we were able to teach her after the party was over.  Just when we thought that our efforts were wasted God handed us someone to teach!  Sometimes it just isn't what we expect.  I learned to rely on God's time table and not ours.  There is so much more in play than we understand.  

We are also teaching this older gentleman who is about 60-70 years old named David.  He is such a cool old guy!  We are working hard with him in trusting in prayer and the answers he receives about the Book of Mormon.  He made a really cool comment about the Book of Mormon.  He said that if Christ actually came to America then that would be the greatest event and message of joy to ever happen!  I was yelling in my head "YES!  You are right!"  It is so interesting how people will say things they just don't fully understand, but if they did it would change their life!  I absolutely love the gospel.  

This week I focused on the Atonement and its significance.  One of the things that I loved most was the fact that Christ called out to God in the garden of Gethsemane using the familiar term.  He was in so much pain and anguish that he called out "Aba" which in our day would be Daddy.  He was in such a position that he called out just as a little child would for help.  Let us all remember that what Christ went through wasn't easy.  Show gratitude and appreciation for the Savior by using the atonement.  Make the changes you need.  That is why it is there!  I love the hope that the atonement brings into each one our lives.  

Love you all!  

Elder Shoemaker  

One Year Shirt Burning Ceremony! 


One of my favorite pictures of Christ.....

Monday, August 17, 2015


Area:  Kearney, Missouri  
Companion:  Elder Hansen

Hello my fellow family and friends!
Wowie!  One year mark...  It is so crazy to think that I have been out here for a year now.  I was reflecting on what I have done this past year of my life and am excited for what is in store for this next year.  With hopes that it is even better than the first!  I would have to say that one of the things I have learned the most is ACTION!  Without action, nothing will take place.  I was reading in Enos this morning and about how he wrestled with the Lord in mighty prayer.  After he had been forgiven of his sins he didn't go off and continue with his previous ways.  He took action and changed to what he knew Heavenly Father wanted him to be.  Action is the key to any progression.  Without action there would only be digression.  

We had Zone Training this last Friday.  We are entering into a new phase on the iPads!  We get the "area book planner."  We now will have our whole area book on our iPads and be able to update them right after every lesson!  We also have our planners on our iPads as well.  So this week we get to spend 2 hours a day entering in all the records that are in our paper area book and make them digital.  Woopie!

This past Monday we found a family of 4 to teach!  They are the Vogan family.  We have high hopes for this family.  They are so family oriented and service oriented.  

I have gained a love and appreciation for service, this past week especially.  Service has been a big way for us to gain the trust of everyone we are in contact with.  One member made the comment and asked, "Don't you have something else that is more important to do right now than help me paint my house?"  I immediately share the scripture that popped into my head -- Mosiah 2:17, "17 And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God."  He agreed with me and we moved on.  That was when I realized that when we are serving others, we truly are serving God.  Everyone is His child and wants us all to help each other.  It doesn't matter their race, religion, or what they do day to day, they are children of God!  As Christians we have that divine purpose and responsibility to help everyone.  I love how God has set up the principle of service in His vast plan.  As we serve others, our love for them grows.  As we allow others to serve us, their love for us grows and so does our love for them.  
I hope Josh is doing alright.  Keep me posted on him.  Is Tanner still liking his new job?  I loved working with special needs kids in high school, it was a lot of fun. 
Go and serve!!!

Love you all!  
Elder Shoemaker

Monday, August 10, 2015

Same Location - New Companion

Area:  Kearney, Missouri  
Companion:  Elder Hansen

Welp, I'm still here in the Kearney 3rd ward!  Elder Anderton was transferred to the Riverview ward in Independence.  I am now going to be serving with Elder Hansen!  He is another one from the group that I came out with and was in the same room as him in the MTC.  It is pretty sweet to be able to serve with the Elders that I came out with.  

This has been one hectic week!  Daylin was baptized by Dillon on Wednesday! That was so amazing to see someone who just was able to make covenants with God turn around and then help someone else do it as well.  All of both of their families came again.  We are hoping to see some solid potentials within their families who we can teach as well.  The spirit has worked on all of them so much the past week since they have been to two baptisms in a row.  Both Dillon and Daylin are moving out to college today, so we won't be seeing them for awhile.  

I was able to confirm Daylin yesterday at church.  I always love performing that part of the ordinance.  Helping someone else receive the gift that has blessed me in so many ways and knowing that it is something that they can receive no other way.  The experiences that I have been able to have out here are incredible!   

We did some nasty service this past week.  This family that we helped were hoarders and have a gross house that if full of blegh!  I was cleaning out the backyard and found the jackpot...  I shoveled out two plastic storage bins full of cat poop in plastic bags that they would just toss off their back porch.  It was a little stinky!  We also helped another old guy who needed a floor built for his outdoor storage shed.  So we built that for him, that was pretty fun.  

Our computer that we have as Zone Leaders to do all our reports and what not .... crashed this passed week!  We have the most reports out of the month to do tomorrow so that kind of sucks. We took it to one of our members houses who is good with computers and he was able to hack into the hard drive and pull all our reports and stuff.  Now we are just waiting for our new computer to get here.  Back to the old paper records for the week! 

As far as anything I need for my 1 year box (wow is that already here?!), I would love if you sent me out 2 or 3 new pair of mesh garments.  The shirt size is a small and my pants size for them is a 28-30.  Thank you so much!! 

Love you all! 
Elder Shoemaker 
Me and Elder Hansen - New Comp! 

Elder Anderton, Dillon, Daylin, Elder Shoemaker

This is Rick... I taught him for the first 6 months of my mission while in Independence and ran into him again while going to Independence this past Thursday for transfer meeting.  Still looking better than ever! 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Cowboy up Buckaroo!!!

Area:  Kearney, Missouri
Companion:  Elder Anderton


I am going to try and condense all this week into a short email, but I probably won't do it justice.

Thank you so much for the box!  I did receive it and I appreciate it so much!

Shout out to Papa Shoe!  HAPPY BIRTHDAY!  Big 50!

We had a fun time on Tuesday hauling 150 bails of hay for an investigator out here.  That was a good experience and some hard work. I absolutely love it out here!  I don't want to ever leave this area or this ward, it has become a home away from home.  Hopefully I don't get transferred this Thursday.... I most likely won't be getting transferred but I don't make that decision. :-)

So, Dillon was baptized last Saturday! The whole service was amazing. There was a bunch of family there and a ton of non members from Dillons family and Daylins family.  The spirit touched each one of them.  All of the non members were crying so we are hoping that there will be some teaching and more converts come out of it!  He was confirmed the next day and also received the priesthood.  We got a call from Daylin yesterday while out buying cowboy boots with Dillon and bishops son in law saying that she wants to be baptized on Wednesday the 5th!  This has been a crazy couple of days trying to get everything lined up for her.  Dillon is going to be baptizing her! He has become a spiritual leader and wants to become the best man he can be.

That is about all that I have that I have right now but I'll send some pictures for you in place of words.

We just got kicked out of a haircut place because we were Mormon... Cool!  Now I'm cutting Elder Anderton's hair instead.

Elder Shoemaker

Cowboy Up Buckaroo!!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Baptisms and Boots

Area:  Kearney, Missouri
Companion:  Elder Anderton

I'll email you all tomorrow.  We just had Daylin call and say she wants to be baptized on Wednesday so we have to finish teaching her the last 2 lessons.  This has been a really hectic day!  We went with Dillon and another member, Dalton, to go and buy some cowboy boots this morning.  They are pretty sweet.  Good old Ariats.  Mine are on the  right.

Love you all and will email you an update tomorrow!

Elder Shoemaker