A day in the life of a Fort Worth missionary. . . as posted by his parents

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Temple, Texas - Jun 25, 2012

Dear friends and family, This past week has gone pretty well it is exciting to be in Temple in a whole new area. I am slowly getting used to the area. I have been sick this past week but am almost fully recovered. It helped me to see how I can still accomplish work when I am sick and see that when I am feeling better how much more that I can do. I am excited to be with elder Blair. He knows the area very well and is very good at getting to know people and being friendly. Temple is going well. One of the people we are teaching is a young man that went on a week long camp out with the boys of the ward. He read scriptures with them and said a prayer once or twice. It sounds like he had a great time. A great spiritual experience that I had was with my added responsibility as a district leader. I have already seen the Lord help me out. It may sound minimal but I feel as if the Lord has prompted me as to what I can do to help the district best. I am excited to be in Temple and be able to work with the missionaries in this area. Temple is a pretty large place compared to Stephenville. I am in the Temple 2nd ward which covers the far west on Temple and then a town called Belton with a couple of surrounding towns. We actually live in a very nice apartment complex probably the nicest in Belton. However the mission apartment was kind of thrashed but we have gotten it cleaned up very well. I will make sure to send some pictures next week. As a district leader I am the leadership over my companionship and two others in the district. I report their numbers at the end on the week. I am am also in charge of a district meeting which goes on once a week. I will also conduct companion exchanges with missionaries and visit the other areas of the district. I am excited for these responsibilities and know that that will help me to grow immensely. I am working on getting used to the area. It was all weird at first being in a new area with a new companion. I felt like I was ready to leave Stephenville and I know Elder Payne will do well there as a trainer. It sounds like the ward is growing pretty well . I am glad that the parents were able to get together for the fireside. I am sure it will help out the youth very well. It also sounds like day camp went amazingly well. It is sad to here that Spence and Chels are leaving. You will have to make sure and get me the address for them. I am excited to here about the classes that you are taking dad to get ready to take the reins on your floor. It will not be suprizing if you do. It also sounds like you got some pretty fancy new corner table mom and I already like them better. There is going to be a second story on the house when I get back. Haha. Actually that would be pretty cool and we could have a slide from the balcony to the pool. Well make sure and send me some more questions about my new area and I will make sure to get some pictures sent. I am excited to be in Temple and do work here! Love, Elder Nathaniel Shoemaker

Friday, June 22, 2012

First Transfer

Dear family and friends, It sounds like day camp was a major success. It probably feels good for it to be over. It is great that it was all able to go through with no major injuries. I cannot wait to see the pictures. That is crazy about the kid getting bit by the red ant that must have hurt. I am getting a couple of mosquito bites but not bad. I have not even seen any cockroches here (knock on wood) haha. Anyways big news ELDER PAYNE GET TO TRAIN! I am super excited that he will have that opportunity. It will help him to grow so much. I have also been called of the Lord to serve as a district leader in another area of the mission. It will be such a great opportunity. I am preparing now to take on that responsibility when we transfer on Wednesday. So, you can put a hold on mail or just send mail to the mission address until I can email my new address. This past week in Stephenville went so well we made the goal of finding a lot of new investigators. We did not meet that goal but I really felt like it helped out our week very well. I truly felt like we found 6 strong quality investigators. Elder Payne is doing great. He is very excited to train but is also nervous. I know that he is going to do a great job here in stephenville especially as he puts his trust in the lord it will truly be the only way because it was difficult to train until I did the same. I am super excited. I know it may be sad to leave Stephenville but this past week has been made up of working hard to make sure I am proud of my time spent here. I am so excited to go to Temple, Texas. It is exactly the place where I need to be at this point in my mission. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve as a district leader. I feel like like the responsibilities I have from the Lord are helping me to build my life. I know I am not perfect and am glad that I will have the chance to serve other missionaries. I had an amazing spiritual experience this past week. There were some times as I was serving in Stephenville were I felt like I did not use time wisely or work to my fullest extent. I decided to change that and am grateful that I am able to repent. I have worked harder this past week and I cannot even remember or feel the guilt from my mistakes. I am grateful that I can be forgiven. I know as a district leader I must set an example and I have changed what I need to, to be able to do that. I love Stephenville and Elder Payne and am also excited to serve my family in Temple, TX! Love, Elder Shoemaker ;-)

Sunday, June 17, 2012

June 11th, 2012

Dear Family and all my friends who graciously support me, Elder Payne and Elder Shoemaker are doing great in Stephenville. The past week in S-ville was trying, we had gone this week without finding any new investigators. However we were blessed the end of this week by finding two new investigators on Sunday. Me and Elder Payne have made a stretching but reachable goal for this next week of focusing on new investigators in preparation for transfers. We are up-ing the teaching pool also in preparation for baptisms so we will still have people to teach once they become new members of Christ's Church. I am excited for this next we and the incentive to finish strong for the transfer. I had a great spiritual experience this past week. We had been talking with a convert of a year while on an exchange with him about his experience of knowing the Book of Mormon was true. He said he prayed and right as he addressed his Heavenly Father, he started crying for the first time and he felt as ifs he were talking with God. That night as I prayed, I knew God was listening but as I have had a tough week, I really felt like he was there waiting to help me. I felt so overwhelmed but so comforted by my father in heaven. What a spiritual uplifting experience. It sound like everyone is getting in the spirit of Day Camp helping out and getting things done. I cannot wait to hear how day camp goes and see the crazy pictures haha. I have been in Stephenville for about 6 months now it is crazy I feel like I have been out for only like a month. Transfers will be next Wednesday I will find out if i am staying or being called to another area next Museay and will let you all know. I will be excited either way because I know it is where the lord wants me to serve. Me and Eelder Payne are finishing up the last week of out 12 week program and it has benefited us so well. I loved being able to go through it again and it has made Elder Payne a great missionary. Haha, dad i love the gps route of lawn mowing i can tell that you used our neighbors trash can along with the diagonal pattern too! If you send shirts this week you should definatley send them to the mission office as first class so it will get forwarded to wherever I may be if it is Stephenville or a different area. Anyways, I I am excited to hear about day camp and also to see what will happen with transfers! Love, Elder Nathaniel Shoemaker

Jun 4th, 2012

Dear Friends and Family, Yes I would love some cookies haha. How date you hold back your secret. It sounds like day cam is almost ready to go the activities sound awesome and I bet the scouts are going to love it. WHHHHHAAAAT! Brother Smith is the assistant scout master?! Is he a member now? Anyways it looks like Justin is taking some initiative and putting a productive summer together and is going to have fun with Austin. Yeah Texas weather is super humid and hot. I have gotten used to it now but still I could never live move here haha. It is exciting to here about all of the graduates and going of to college and missions. That is crazing Tanner is getting ready to go too. It sounds like you are well on your way to the 100 mile bike ride dad it sounds like it will be fun. I remember that story about the semi trucks and haha I love grandpas quote. It reminds me of Matthew 6:24 about no man can serve two masters. You cannot be on both sides you cannot server God and mammon you can only choose one to devote your life too. I have been working on this and putting off the natural man. I am more upbeat when I am about to complain I say something that is cheer Iull. Like maybe I hate mosquitoes but instead I can say spiders are so cool. I also just get out there when I am tired and let the spirit work in me so I can get rid of natural man feelings and apply Alma 26:12 for in his strength I can do all things. It helps me to devote my time and finish the day strong. Anyways this week went pretty well I have been really focusing on reporting accurate numbers and it takes the guilt away from counting lessons when there is not everything there that is needed. It made this past week so different. My teaching has changed it helps me to work harder and it helps me to connect more with the doctrine of Christ. I am actually teaching these people because I want to teach them not just to get numbers. I really feel like a true missionary. Yeah it might hurt when we do not meet standards but i know if I count lessons right I will strive to really help people and also work harder during the week. Elder Payne is doing great he is teaching so much better and is starting to teach the things that meet the investigators needs. Stephenville is doing so amazing we are finding new people and building up our quality new investigator pool and helping them to progress so well. I love Stephenville and and making sure to take advantage of my time here. Love, Elder Shoemaker ;)