Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Church Family’ Category

For some reason I have been thinking about friends lately and the different places they fill in my life.  I have many friends and each of them are different. 

A few weeks ago I found out that one of my life long friends had to have emergency surgery and since she is older, I was concerned.  Even though it wasn’t what we would call major, I was still concerned.  I can’t really explain the feelings that I had during that time.  What if something happened?  What would I do without her?  And the funny thing is, we don’t talk everyday or even every week, but I just know she’s there.  If I ever needed her for ANYTHING she would be there.  I have a few friends like this.  Lifelong friendships are awesome.  You are totally you when with these kind of friends. 

Then, just a couple of weeks ago we attended the General Convention of our organization, the United Pentecostal Church International.  This is always a highlight to me.  To gather with so many people of like precious faith and worship together is simply great.  Also at this meeting we get together for fellowship with other longtime friends and our “conference friends”.  When we get with these people we just pick up where we left off at the last convention and have great times of conversation, laughter and enjoying each others company. 

After the convention I was privileged to spend a few extra days with my sisters.  These are my blood sisters and there is no one like them in my life.  What can you say about sisters?  They just are!  I love them both dearly. 

The new friends that God is bringing into my life are so precious to me.  We are getting to know each other and you are fulfilling yet another role in my life and I hope that I am doing the same for you.  With the family of God, it is so exciting. 

We got home on Friday Night and I was already looking forward to seeing and worshipping with my church family.  What precious people of God they are.  As I was kneeling toward the end of an awesome service today and thanking God for what He is doing in our midst, it just came to me again, the different roles different people play in our lives.  As much as I love and appreciate my lifelong friends,  my longtime friends, my conference friends and even my sisters, none of them can take the place of my church family/friends.  There is a special and different bond with each of these groups of people but each one plays a very significant role in my life. 

I can’t find the words to express my deep gratitude for them all.  For the friends that have been part of my life, all of my life,  I love you more than you even realize.  My longtime friends that have stuck with me through thick and thin.  You’ve been there when those closest to me passed from this life.  We have cried together and sometimes laughed so hard we couldn’t hardly catch our breath.  Thanks for just being there.  Sometimes you didn’t know what to say, but you was there and that makes all the difference in the world.  I like the saying, “You can’t make new, old friends”.  🙂

To my sisters:  I love you and appreciate you more with each passing day.  Even in our relationships though, we each play different roles in each others lives.  Talk about ups and downs!  We have been through it all.  We have cried ’til we didn’t have any tears left to shed.  We have shared sorrow and grief together.  Our worlds have been shattered.  However, with each of our strengths and helping each other, we have made it through, together.  Then there are the times that we laugh so hard we hurt.  I’m thankful that this happens more often than not.  You two are the best!  I love you dearly.  “I’m smiling because you’re my sister.  And laughing because you can’t do anything about it”! 

My church family:  You are incredible.  I cannot even begin to tell you what you mean to me.  After being with all my friends at conference, when I walked into the church today, I was so warmed by your love.  Church families hold a very special place for the Pastor and his family.  I love singing and worshipping with you.  I love dancing before the Lord with you!  I love it when you pray for me and I love to pray for you.  I love how you love to hear your pastor preach and teach. 🙂  I love your outpourings of love that is given in the form of a gift or just a simple, “I love and appreciate you”.  You are simply the best and no one can fill that place in my life but YOU. 

This has been my thoughts for quite sometime now.  I love my life and all the people in it.  Thank you all for being YOU!  You are precious to me. 

Read Full Post »

If you were accused of being a Christian, would you be found guilty?

I was in a place of business today and mentioned a person’s name that attends our church. The owner of the business stopped and looked at me and said, “You must be a Christian if you are friends with ___________.” I said, “Well, as a matter of fact I am a Christian and my husband is the pastor of the church _________ attends”.   She looked at me and said, “I am glad to meet you”.  I walked out of that place with my head held high and proud.  I thought, what a great testimony of _________, that someone would think I was a Christian simply because I was friends with someone who is obviously a Christian.

How is your reputation around town?

As you can imagine I was proud (in the right sense of the word).  And, I am proud to say that many folks just like ______ attend The Pentecostal Church.  People recognize them as Christians.  Perfect?  Of course not!  Striving to be Christ-like?  Indeed!  If I am accused of being a Christian, I definitely want to be found guilty.

Blessings!

Read Full Post »

We all showed up yesterday at church wearing some version of black and leopard. 🙂  I wonder why that happens sometime?  I guess the old saying would apply…”Great Minds run in the same Channel”.  We thought it was “cute” so we took a picture.          

     Church Ladies

Minuet, Me, Amanda, Mindy, Danelle

Read Full Post »

This may seem a little sacrilegious to some folks, but bare with me for a little bit.

I grew up in a Pentecostal Preacher’s home.  I loved every minute of it.  Really!  When I was young and we would have a revival (extended series of services), we went to church every night of the week.  Then we progressed to having Saturday Nights with no service.  That was great because then we didn’t have to go to church on Saturday Night with curlers in our hair.  No hot rollers back in those days so we had to roll our hair Saturday Night so it would be pretty for Sunday.  Not quite sure why it wasn’t so important to be pretty on Saturday Night. 🙂  Anyway…then we progressed to having Monday and Tuesday Nights off and having Revival services Wednesday through Sunday.  Ahhh..the joys.  Well,  in some of those long services when my friends and I would get a little bored we would make up things with the songs we sang in church.  Here are a couple we use to sing and  then laugh ’til we cried.  My brother and sister was in on it too.  “Now lettuce (let us)  have a little chocolate (talk with) Jesus, Lettuce tell Him all about our bubbles (troubles)….”  and,  “I’ll fry (fly) an egg (away) Oh glory…” .  As I got older we still had fun with songs.  We would mix words up like, “Oh glory je to bejus let the rallelujahs hole….”(Oh Glory be to Jesus, let the Hallelujahs roll).

Other times people thought they heard something different then what was actually being sung.  A friend of ours, Bill Henry, who we (Nathan and I) sang with for many years, wrote hundreds of awesome songs.  One song he wrote, “Running With HEAVEN on My Mind”,  had to have a little word change, because the first time we sang it he had written it to say, “I’m running with WINNIN’ on my mind” and a man in our church was laughing after service because he said it sounded like we were singing,” I’m running with WOMEN on my mind.”  🙂    My mother-in-law said that when she was a little girl she couldn’t ever understand why they would sing a song in church about a cross-eyed bear name Gladly…”Gladly the cross I’d bare…”.  Singing is good for the soul but it can kind of get you trouble sometimes too.  For instance, one time when my Dad resigned from a church, he then asked Mother to sing and she sang, “It Will Take Me a Million Years to Thank the Lord”.  Probably not the best selection for the moment. 🙂

Well, I hope you have enjoyed my little tour down memory lane.  I’m sure if you were raised in a preacher’s home you could tell some of your own stories.  Just thought I’d share a little church humor with you.  Hope you don’t think I’m horrible, but P.K.s  are good at finding ways to have good fun, even in church. 🙂

Read Full Post »

tangerine friends

 

The 12th Chapter of Romans, in the 14th verse says, “Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep”.  The Message says it this way, “Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down”.

I love friends like this.  If you have a friend that something good has happened to, why not call them up (if you can’t be with them) and have a good ol’ rejoicing session!  You will be blessed as well as them.  If a friend is weeping now, sit down and cry with them. 

There is another scripture that I love and it is, Galations 6:10—As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.  We give and give to reach people that are not saved and this is right.  However, don’t forget your friends that are in the church.  The ones that work beside you in the gospel work.  As the scripture above says, “especially” unto those of the household of faith. Let them know you care today.

I am so blessed to have these kind of friends in my life.  Let your friends know that you care today, one way or the other.  Happy or Sad.  Up or down.  They are your friends and they matter.  Let’s just make this our unofficial “Friend Day”. 

tender moment

Read Full Post »

What a smashing success!  Over 87 visitors.  So many good things happened I don’t even know how to put it in words.  Go here for a good report and some photos.

You can also view photos on my flickr account.  You will find it in the right column under “More Pics To Enjoy”.

Read Full Post »

A couple of weeks ago we were blessed to have Shawn and Gwen Dunahoe and their children, Ryan and Riley Paige with us for the weekend.  They are like our “kids”. 🙂  Shawn received the Holy Ghost in our church in Texarkana and then married a beautiful young lady that had been raised in our church.  They are now in full time ministry.  Shawn is an excellent Bible Study teacher and that is what he promotes as he travels around the country with his family.  I know that he puts in about 30–40 hours a week (besides church time) in teaching Bible Studies and training folks to teach.  Shawn and Gwen are a great team.  Anyway,  we enjoyed having them with us just for fun, except for Sunday when Shawn preached. They needed to relax a few days and we did just that.  This was the first time we have been able to see little Riley and she stole our hearts.  What a little doll baby. Ryan is a big 15 year old now and that is hard to believe.  He is a great big brother too. Shawn and Gwen, don’t let it be so long between visits next time. 🙂

DSC_0723 Gwen and Riley Paige

DSC_0721 Nathan and Riley Paige. Awww…

DSC_0725 Ryan, Patricia and Danelle

I can’t believe I didn’t get one picture of Shawn.

_____________________________________________________________________________

Nathan and I headed out to our Valentine’s Dinner at The Chart House.

DSC_0733

_________________________________________________________________________________________

MINISTRY FAIR!

This past Wednesday Night we hosted our first Ministry Fair.  It was very good.  Each Ministry in the church presented their ministry by creating a science like project and set up booths.  We had 15 ministries represented.  I think we missed a couple, but will be sure and get them for next year.  This allowed our people and especially the new folks to know the opportunities to be involved in some way in the Kingdom of God.  We are firm believers in the fact that everyone should be involved some way in the church.  There is something for EVERYONE to do.  I am excited about the growth of The Pentecostal Church numerically and also the growth I see spiritually in our people.  This was a fun filled night with good fellowship and information about our church.  I was not able to get a photo of everything but here is a good sample. 🙂

Read Full Post »

Yesterday was another incredible day of services at The Pentecostal Church.  It will be long remembered as one of the milestones in our church history.  When we are visited by God like this I find it very hard to write in words what happened and what it meant to me personally.  My husband has been under a special anointing here of late and it is just to hard to explain.  So many good things were accomplished in the Holy Ghost.  Nathan has always said, “God can do more in five minutes than I could ever do in a lifetime”.  So true.  When He shows up like He did yesterday….well, WOW!

I want to focus my post today on some incredible people; the musicians of The Pentecostal Church.  Kyle Valenti (electric guitar), Omar Iboa (acoustic guitar), Dominic Ingram (drums, bass), Nathaniel Hurst (drums), Danelle Silveira (keyboard, organ), Luis Lenzi (keys, organ, sax…),  Todd Valenti (keys, organ, bass…), This post is for you all.  I know that on our church web-site it has me listed on staff as the Minister of Music.  I don’t know how true that really is.  I guess someone had to take the title when our church was small. 🙂  Hopefully that will be changed one of these days.  The people that are named above and that I work with week in and week out are some of the most dedicated and talented people on the planet.  If you walk into The Pentecostal Church prayer room on any given service you will find these folks are some of the first to be there, seeking the face of God for that service and for the anointing of the Holy Ghost.  Sunday’s are hard to get into the prayer room before service because of our schedule, but you can feel the prayers of these people when the music begins.  It is not the beat or tempo of the song.  It is not just the excellence in which they play, but it is the anointing of the Holy Ghost that you feel.

Yesterday was no exception.  They gave and gave while the church received blessings. (I wonder how many times we sang, “Freedom”?)  That is okay.  That is our job description and our ministry.  However, after a long while in the altar service, I stopped them all from playing and singing and had them come stand behind the pulpit.  I told the church about how these folks play and sing so we can be in the presence of God to receive.  I asked the church, “However you can make music, do it.  With your voice or with your hands clapping and pray for these people so they can get lost in the spirit for awhile.”  WOW!  The church went to praying, praising and clapping.  Several of the men came to the platform and laid hands on them and the power of God came and blessed.  Our musicians received incredible blessings yesterday.  I am so thankful for what the Lord did for them.

Keep it up guys.  I just wanted to let you all know how thankful I am for you and your talent and dedication.  You are incredible.  Thank you for using your talent to glorify God and be a blessing to His kingdom.  I love and appreciate you more than you know.

P.S.  Danelle, when you read this don’t be discouraged.  I know you and Matt had to miss yesterday but your blessing is coming.  I appreciate and love you too for your dedicated life and talent.  🙂

Read Full Post »

DSC_0658

Happy Birthday to my dear husband, Nathan Joseph Hurst!  You are an incredible man.  This weekend has been filled with fun, friends, family, joy and happiness.  It is amazing the turns life can take.  When we looked back the other day and talked about how different we are at 50 then when we first married and even before, it was quite a change. 🙂  However, one thing has always been a constant in your life and that is, God has always been number one with you.  I have always felt secure and confident that you were following the mind of Christ, therefore it has been easy for me to follow you.  I can’t say I have always been “thrilled” about some of the choices but I always knew (and still do know) that you gave every decision much thought and prayer before you made it. That means the world to me.

As I was going through our many bins of pictures and memories so we could put something together for your 50th Celebration, I was once again made to realize what a blessed woman I am to have you as my partner.  You have been an incredible husband, father, pastor, friend and confidante.  I listened to Nathaniel and Danelle tonight reminisce about some of their memories while growing up in our household and they were precious to me. They have always felt that same confidence that I have.

We are privileged to have your folks, one brother and one sister in our church here in Hollister and listening to them tell the stories of your growing up years is quite hilarious. However, that same theme carries on even with them…how once you gave you life completely to God at the age of 15, you have never looked back.  God has been number one!

I know that you are not just looking back.  In fact I could tell that you are glad the looking back part is over and you are looking to the future of what God is going to do with your life and ministry.  You are in the prime of life and it is amazing to see how things are unfolding for you now. I pray that you are blessed with God’s best in the coming year.  That He holds nothing back from you, in anointing, love and wisdom!  I love you. BUNCHES!!!

_____________________________________________________________________________

Friday Night I totally surprised Nathan by having some of his friends come to Hollister for a party.  The look on his face was priceless when he walked in the house and saw them all here and screaming “SURPRISE”, “HAPPY BIRTHDAY”! We had such a great time talking and laughing and eating.  Thanks again to you all for coming and making Nathan’s 50th so special.

DSC_0636

DSC_0637 DSC_0638

DSC_0639 DSC_0640

DSC_0641 DSC_0644

DSC_0653

Stephen Hill, Todd Johnson, Paul Carasco, John Nelson, Rick Keyes, Matt Silveira, Nathan Hurst, B.J. Hurst, Tim Flowers, Nathaniel Hurst

DSC_0655

Saprina Flowers, Pricilla Carasco, Sharon Nelson, Dorothy Hurst, Danelle Silveira, Sharon Keyes, Susan Hill, Cherish Hill, Pat Keyes, Kim Johnson, Nathan and Ronda Hurst.

______________________________________________________________________________

Saturday Night we celebrated with our church family and we celebrated as only The Pentecostal Church can do it.  🙂  They are awesome and wide open.  Since my husband was a teenager during the 70’s they threw him a 70’s theme party. My! My! My!  Did they ever “put on the dog”.  When we got to the fellowship hall there was a rainbow beaded door hanger.  Remember those?  We walked through and everyone was dressed in 70’s garb.  The wigs, the moo moo’s, the platform shoes, double knit and head scarves all came out tonight.  You will see by the photos that they really had it all together.  Kyle, Matt, Sabrina, Jason, Todd and Marcus really did a bang up job in portraying their pastor.  Bro. Kirk, Bro. Rodney, Bro. Gary, Bishop Hurst, Nathaniel and Danelle did a bang up job talking about their pastor, brother, son and dad.  It was great.  From the decorations and food to the warmth and friendship with our church family, it was par excellence.

DSC_0671

DSC_0678 DSC_0679

DSC_0670 DSC_0681

DSC_0682 DSC_0685

DSC_0690 DSC_0696 DSC_0697

DSC_0673 DSC_0692

DSC_0701 DSC_0710

DSC_0708

DSC_0840

Read Full Post »

Saturday Night was our church Christmas banquet.  We had a super great time.  It’s been a long time since I’ve laughed that hard. 🙂  We were entertained by, Head in a Box, The Chinleys,  The Singing Nuns,  The Twelve Pains of Christmas, The “Balloon” Ladies and many other things in between.  Then to top it off with a “Touch of Class”,  Luis Lenzi played his saxophone as only he can do. 🙂 Thanks goes to EVERYONE who made this banquet a success:  Decorations, Christina Atkinson.  Sound Techs, Kyle and Todd Valenti.  Entertainment, Teresa Sarria.  Caterer, Elegant Touch.  Desserts, Tena Valenti.  Clean up, Everyone & Omar Iboa :). Thanks again…You guys are awesome. 🙂

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »