Sunday, November 20, 2011

Are you a Member?

Today, Mark and I officially became members of our church. We participated in a newcomers’ class and aligned ourselves with the mission, vision and beliefs of the church. Before finishing the process, we all shared our story of how we became a Christian. Here is my story:

I was raised in a great home and a wonderful church. We always went to church. Whether for a revival, choir practice, pot luck, to clean the inside or to mow the outside, we were there every time the doors were open.  One summer during Vacation Bible School, I remember going into one of the church offices with a group of kids and being talked to by the leader. The next thing I know we were all getting baptized.

One Sunday morning something happened that I won’t ever forget. It was the Sunday before I started my senior year in high school. I remember sitting in the pew listening to Bro. Brillhart (my pastor for 26 years) preach and as he started the invitation, an overwhelming feeling came over me. I just knew something wasn’t right in my heart.  I stepped out and walk down the aisle and remember telling the man at the front, “I don’t think I’m saved!” I was ushered out by a dear lady, Mrs. Francis Sample who resides in heaven now. I was shown the Scriptures that I had read and even memorized in AWANA. I just knew God was immediately and powerfully drawing me to Him. I wanted to personally place my trust in Him. I remember saying a prayer and when I walked away, I felt like 1000 pounds had been lifted off my chest. I knew I had just officially become a member of the family of God!

So that’s my story. What’s yours?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

What's next?

Lots of things happened over the summer. 
We got to take some really nice family trips which included 2 water parks (Schlitterbahn & NRH2o), 2 zoos’(Dallas Zoo & Austin Zoo), and two new restaurants(Five Guys & Chipotle). Doesn’t seem like a lot but through the eyes of our 4 kids it was priceless! 
The other thing that happened over the summer is that Mark and I decided it was time to close San Angelo Church.  We set out to create a church that unchurched people would love to attend and we did that! I look back on all the hard work from many people that helped launch this new way of “doing” church and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!!!  It was the most rewarding but challenging thing we have ever been a part of.  San Angelo Church may have only existed for 31 months but it will forever have an impact on the lives it touched!  As one person put it, “There is not another church in San Angelo that can take the place of what we experienced at SAC.”  
Now onto the question that started this post, what’s next? Right now we don’t know exactly. Hopefully soon we will know where we will begin the next phase of our lives. Lots of possibilities, but as we wait for God’s leading, we continue on as normal. I started back to work, kids started back to school, and Mark can’t wait for football season to start.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

What time is it? Summer time!!

Well, we survived another school year!!  Now just counting down the minutes until it is officially over.  I actually get out a day earlier than my kids so I am planning on ending my day with a lunch with Mark and Madison. 

Looking forward to summer!  Got to get the pool up and start making the "to do" list.  I figure the earlier I get started I may actually get everything done that I want to before August gets here! 

Lots of things happening over the next few months and can't wait to share some of those with everyone soon!

So here is to our summer vacation full of plans, cook-outs, sleeping in, swimming, trips, projects and memories!!

P.S.  Stayed tuned for updates!!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Part 3

After Mark and I said our "I do's", we headed off for a two week honeymoon to the Smoky Mountains and Disney World!!  We had a great time just getting to know each other again.  Being separated for 11 months makes you appreciate that person so much more!
Over the next few years, we enjoyed our life together.  We both had finished school, had acquired great jobs, built a house, got two dogs, and then one day it was time to start a family!  Five years and 3 months after we got married, our lives were forever changed with our first baby, Reagen Rose!! Then 22 months later, Kennedy Raine came along. Then 2 years later, Lincoln James Weldon, and then 2 yrs and 9 months after Lincoln, we were blessed with the fourth and final installment of our family, Madison Hope!

That's a lot of kids in a short amount of time!  But I wouldn't change that for anything!!!!

Mark and I have been blessed to have a wonderful family and home life.  Over the past years, we have often thought about our future and what we want out of life itself.  Obviously, the number one thing we want most is to seek and know God's will for us.  That's a hard thing to know sometimes.  I guess that is where our faith comes in to help us lean more on God than ourselves.  Recently, Mark has read a number of books that basically help you understand what you want out of life.  He has come up with a life statement that I am looking forward to seeing it come to pass: Pursue the extraordinary!

As Mark and I try to pursue the extraordinary, not only for us but for our kids as well, we hope that our story continues to touch and bless people as we continue down this road called life!!

Stay tuned......

Thursday, May 5, 2011

My Life Part 2

I know some believe in "love at first sight" and that is exactly what happened for Mark.  That first sight of me was all he needed to know that he was going to marry me someday! How's that for a happy ending! I guess the first time I saw Mark, I thought I had a decent chance on having a date with him but I didn't get to talk with him that first night thanks to my Uncle Mike!  If you don't know my Uncle Mike, you have missed out!  He has a story for everyone. He had Mark's attention that evening and it wasn't until Sunday that I actually got to speak with Mark.  Over the next few months we began to get to know each other through the singles class at church and then he eventually asked me out!  I actually was waiting for a LONG time for him to do that and I even was "dating" someone when he finally asked.  He picked me up in his car (a red topaz with a nice sunroof), and we went to the movies (my choice- The 3 Musketeers) and finished up at Pizza Hut.  He didn't kiss me on the first date but he did on the second.  He actually asked if he could kiss me and with my braces and all he did.  I guess you could say that was the start of a beautiful thing. 
We had our ups and downs over the next 6 months or so and then one day it finally hit me.  He's the one!  All the years of praying for the right man and imagining who he was and where he lived came flooding in at that moment.  Mark was the one God made specifically for me!!  He had everything I had prayed for in a husband and then some!  I didn't have to compromise my wish list for anything. 
Then after a one year separation, (thanks to the AirForce via Korea) we made it official!  On June 22, 1996, I became a Mrs!

Part 3 next time

Thursday, April 28, 2011

My life part 1

Since starting this blog, I haven’t really shared a lot about my life and how I got to where I am today.
It all started back in March 1973.  I was born into the Hamilton family which consisted of my mom and dad and a 3 y/o sister named Cinnamon.  Don’t remember a whole lot about the very beginning other than some of the stories that have been told and pictures hidden away in photo albums.  My mom and dad still joke about the day I was born and how I had such a full head of black hair that they couldn’t tell me apart from all the other babies in the nursery.  I still get comments about “that hair”! 
I continued growing up in a wonderful family home and then one day someone else joined our family.  I will never forget the day when I was finishing up in my second grade class and going to my Aunt Debbie’s house after school and getting the call from my dad that said “it’s a boy!”  I was 8 years old and had a new baby brother named Aaron.  From the beginning, people have questioned why Aaron wasn’t named after a spice.  I don’t think he will ever evade that question.  He was actually named after some of the Hamilton side relatives and he has lived up to their prominent statures (big and tall).
Life continued on through junior high, high school, and on to college.  Great friends and memories were created and developed through that 8+ year span.  Then things started to take a different turn.  While attending Angelo State University, I started “dating”.  Isn’t that one of the main reasons to go to college is to date? LOL!  I actually never went out past a first date but looking back I can see why.  God had a specific guy for me and he moved him to San Angelo without me knowing about it.  During this time I had started nursing school and had a lot of projects to do and tests to study for and really didn’t have time to be in a relationship, I thought!  So on a Wednesday night at church, the night I didn’t go, my mom came back saying there was a “NEW” guy that had visited and he looked nice.  Of course anytime “new meat” visited the church it was game on!  I actually had to wait until the next Wednesday night to see this guy but it was worth the wait!
To be continued…

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Works in Progress

Last night at our small group, we discussed how raising kids is a great work in progress!  Just when you think you got that one parenting skill down with one child, the other child requires you to go in a totally different direction.  Talk about being a multi-parenting parent!  I think one of the hardest things to grasp is God’s not only using me as a mom to show my kids how to live and believe but He is also working in my kids lives as well.  Not one of us is a finished product.  He continually works in each of us!
I am glad God doesn’t stop working in my life.  I want to see God use me in a way I have never imagined before.  I can already see Him working in my kids and that is the coolest thing ever.  Here is an example about my 3rd grade daughter at school yesterday:
 On the way to recess today I overheard Reagen having a sweet, spiritual conversation.  Another girl was asking her if God and Jesus were the same.  It was really neat to her say yes they are the same.  They are one.  I’m not sure what started the conversation, but what a blessing she was in sharing about Jesus today!  Knew it would make your day to know that your sweet girl was sharing about Jesus!  
Philippians 1:6 “And I am sure that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on that day when Christ Jesus comes back again.”
Please God, continue to work in our lives to help others see you in us! Amen!