Family Alive

Brian, Kristine, Analise, and Josiah Toone

Building Relationships and Moving On

3rd May 2005

(I’ll post a couple cute pictures from the weekend first, and the long-winded details of our great weekend will be below.)

Panama City Beach, FL

This past weekend, Brian, Analise and I, along with Brian’s parents, went to Panama City Beach, FL for a conference put on by our church, Lakeside Baptist. We had a wonderful time! Brian’s parents babysat so we were really able to be fully involved in everything. The weather, unfortunately, wasn’t what you’d like for a beach trip. We did get to take Analise to the beach on Saturday morning, though it was windy and cool. She liked the feel of the sand, and she was captivated by the sea gulls (and of that, we couldn’t get a smile for any pictures).

The Treasure Within Conference

The first highlight was dinner at the Saltwater Grill – awesome food and great time getting to know two young couples that we’re going to be spending a lot of time with (more later). The worship was excellent, and the sessions were taught by the young adult pastor, Chris Harris. He’s got a gift of speaking truth that really cuts to the heart, and he’s very passionate. It’s really contagious. We spent some good time that evening getting to know several couples that we’ve not known from Lakeside. (Sidenote: Brian grew up in this church, but he’s been away for 10 years. His parents still attend there, and they are very involved. Everyone knows them and Brian, and so we’ve returned to a place where everybody knows our name, but we have to figure out who they are!)

There was a lot planned for Saturday, including an afternoon of fun and activities on the beach. Unfortunately, we had to move our fun indoors. A few guys decided they wouldn’t be deterred by the wind/rain/thunder/lightning and headed to the beach for volleyball. (what were they thinking?!??) Brian’s never one to let rain spoil his plans, and he convinced me to join them. (what were WE thinking?!?) After an hour of diving for balls and nearly blinded by sand, I stumbled back to our room looking very much like a drowned rat. That evening we had dinner with another two couples, who we’ve not met before. These two couples both have children, and it was comical how the conversation kept coming back to kid antics and moments only parents can really appreciate (for one example that was shared, SEE HERE).

Prayer Experience
Saturday evening was one of the most special times of the weekend. We had a “prayer experience” in which the women spent time praying aloud as a group for our husbands, while they gathered around us listening. Then we alternated, and the men prayed for the women. With close to 30 couples there, many of whom we don’t know or only know a bit, it was an intimate glimpse into the lives around us, and an awesome time of appreciating who they are and how God is moving in their relationships. It was like listening in on a phone call between them and God. It was a special time to hear the prayers of our own spouse, as well. Though Brian and I pray together, it’s more for “things” and this prayer time was a very tender time of hearing a heart-to-heart conversation thanking God and appreciating the one He’s given us. We had time with our spouse one-on-one to talk and remind ourselves why we chose each other. It was a sweet time of remembrance, and it really blessed us to see how God has grown us each individually since that time 3 years ago. We also had a time of communion on the beach in the dark windy evening. The rain had subsided and it was a beautiful time to share the Lord’s supper surrounded by the majesty of God in the waves crashing on the beach.
The evening concluded with some great praise and worship time and fun how-well-do-you-know-your-spouse games. It was a long, fun, full day.

Moving on…
One hard part of the weekend is that it’s going to be harder to continue some of the relationships we started this weekend. Brian and I have been praying about where to settle as a family for our church home. Chris and Kathy Harris, who led the retreat this weekend, are leaving Lakeside to start a new church. It’s growing out of an overwhelming college/young adult group with Isaiah 26:8 at its heart: “Yes, LORD, walking in the way of your law, we wait for you; your name and your renown are the desire of our hearts.” They’re going to use small groups of individuals/couples to bring connection to the church body, like the home group ministry that we were a part of in California. We’re really excited at what God’s doing, and we’re really looking forward to being a part of this new ministry bringing Him glory. It has been a hard decision, though, as Lakeside is a wonderful church, and we’ve loved everyone we’ve gotten to know. We’re hoping – and planning – to continue to get to know some of the people that we met this weekend, though we might not see them at Lakeside on a weekly basis.

So if you’re still with me after all that:)… you’ll probably be hearing much more about Clearwater Community Church as our first service will be this coming Sunday. If you think of it, pray that God would be glorified in these new beginnings. We’re excited to embark upon this new adventure with him as a family!

4 Responses to “Building Relationships and Moving On”

  1. Corrie Says:

    I’m glad you guys had a good weekend! I was anxiously checking your blog to get the details, so thanks for posting so much (and for your email)!

  2. Cool Aunt Kat Says:

    Oh boy, do I miss my little Bananalise… She’s so cute. You either need to figure out a way for her to come visit me, or get her walking so she can make it up here. I’m glad you had a good weekend! Wish I could go to Florida for a weekend trip…Both my sisters in the same state on the same weekend, and I can’t get there. Darn finals….Love you all…

  3. TB Says:

    Lots of thoughts from me (more to come in an email). But, quickly, while I wait for some paperwork to process, I just wanted to share that I’m excited to hear about your step of faith with the new church. And how cool to hear about your time on the beach. I’m envious – I miss those trips to the beach and having a honey to be there with. I didn’t know Brian’s parents lived SO close 🙂

  4. Steve Says:

    Analise doesn’t look so happy on that beach!! I am glad you guys had a good time and good luck at the new church. Brian, I saw that cycling picture–looks much nicer than Davis–Is that a hill I see? talk to you guys soon.

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