Monday, June 19, 2017

06/19/17 - Raleigh, North Carolina

And we're back! What an incredible week we just had brothers and sisters, easily the best week of my entire mission! :) Last Monday we had a few hours for a preparation day so we decided to drive up to Durham and go touristing! Our first stop was at Dame's Chicken and Waffles. Holy cow, those were the best waffles I have ever eaten! And their chicken was fried to southern perfection! Right outside of Dame's there was a man on the street shining shoes! We walked past him and he told us that he normally charges $20 a pair, but that he would only charge us $10 each. We told him we would pass and he insisted on shining our shoes! Once we told him we were missionaries, he said "Jump right on up! Free for men of the cloth." It was the best 20 minutes ever! We heard about his whole life history and my shoes have never looked better. We promised him some blessings from Heaven for sure! After that adventure, we went over to the Duke campus and we went into one of their libraries. We had the privilege of examining one of the original copies of the Book of Mormon! We read from its pages and held it in our hands. It was a spiritually powerful event that I will never forget. I know that book to be true! We came back to Raleigh and taught Tim at the tennis courts again! He committed to read and pray from the Book of Mormon, we are excited to teach him again this week. We planned a little bit for a meeting the following day and before we knew it, it was time for the meeting! We had a first transfer training meeting on Tuesday when all of the new missionaries still in their first transfer come together and are instructed by President James, Sister James, and us. It was a blast! We hopefully inspired some hope into them and we heard that it had a good impact on them! After the meeting, we visited Rich and watched some more mormon messages with him. He is so strong! We love him!! We then drove down to Fayetteville and spent the night down there in preparation for our zone conference the next morning. The zone conference went perfectly as planned and the missionaries there are on fire! They're actually leading the mission in baptisms! We exchanged with the Fayetteville zone leaders after the meeting and it was a grand old time! I was with Elder Mueller and we enjoyed a few hours of tracting! We woke up nice and early the next morning to drive down to Wilmington. We stopped by Carolina Beach down there and got some Britts Donuts (a legendary donut shop in Wilmington that is only open seasonally). I had never tried it before, but it was hands down the best donut I have ever stuffed into my face! I was then blessed to go on an exchange with Elder Brezenski, my previous companion! We had the best time ever, we tracted for a good while, ate dinner with an old investigator, and visited the Mashinga family (my Congolese family)!! The Mashinga family sang for us and danced and everything, it was marvelous. I was surprised with how much Swahili I still remember too! The Gift of Tongues is real, there is no way I spoke as I did on my own! After our exchange, we all four drove back up to Raleigh and spent the night up here. The Elders left to a temple trip in the morning and my glasses decided to break! Hopefully I will get them fixed tomorrow... Friday was a day full of office work, trying to get ready for the new transfer! We visited Rich again and he is all set for his baptism this Saturday!! We are so excited for him!! The Assistants haven't baptized in over a year! Time to break the drought. Friday night decided to rain super hard and it got so bad that we had to send all the missionaries home to their apartments! There was a pretty big flash flood warning! Saturday was a long day, but a fulfilling one. We spent the entire day from 9 in the morning to 10 at night working on the transfer board. We confirmed all of the changes and then spent quite a few hours updating the electronic files. I also got pretty sick with a cold on Saturday and it has only gotten worse! But it's okay though, the Lord will strengthen me and provide a way. He always does. :) Today was a glorious day, being the Sabbath and all. It was also Father's day!! Happy Happy Father's Day to my hope inspiring, fun loving, example setting, endlessly loving foodie of a Dad! I love you Dad and am grateful for your example. I look up to you and aspire to become like you. I am also grateful for my Father in Heaven whom I am serving day in and day out. I strive to accomplish His will in all things and do my best to bring others back to Him. We actually had four people come to sacrament meeting today! It was a wonderful day for the work. After church we got some last minute things accomplished and then we went to pick up our new companion, Elder Chiu!! We are now going to be a trio of assistants for this transfer!! Many big changes are happening to the mission. The biggest one being "The Great Awakening". Oh yeah, we are excited for the big reveal on Tuesday!! Let's just say, this is going to be North Carolina Raleigh Mission history. Buckle up!!!

Making history,
Elder Shearer

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