We're the Guelfis... That's pronounced Well-Fee! So, Guelcome to our blog! Get ready to laugh and smile with us as we share some fun stories from our blessed life!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Six Years and Counting...

The clock reads 10:58, and it's already been a busy Saturday morning. The boys have been going strong all morning, and I finally just got them settled down with a snack. I am sitting here, taking a quick break and a few minutes to reflect on the significance of today's date: June 25th- our wedding anniversary. Today marks six years of marriage that have flown by so much faster than I ever imagined. I can't help but laugh about the obvious differences between our wedding day, June 25, 2005, and today, June 25, 2011...

June 25, 2005
The actual wedding ceremony and reception are kind of a blur. It's funny that you spend hours agonizing over the invitations and the flowers and the punch flavor, and that maybe you even allow yourself to reach "Bridezilla" status over the petty details that you won't be able to remember six years down the road. I guess what I do remember about the day are the moments that mattered the most: spending time with Fernando's family for the first time, our two families joining together in celebration, my brother and sister singing during the wedding ceremony, Granny looking so pretty in her pink suit, and taking Fernando's hand for the first time as husband and wife. As we drove away from the crowd of waving well-wishers and picked bird seed out of our hair, we both felt so loved, not only by each other but by our families and friends. What a special day!

Fast forward a few years down the road to today, June 25, 2011:
The boys woke up shortly after Fernando left for work, and they have been going non-stop. I don't even think I've brushed my teeth yet today, but so far, I've changed two poopy diapers, wiped runny noses, given two baths, dressed the boys, swept up a box of Cheerios off the kitchen floor, washed a sink-load of bottles and cups, fixed breakfast and a snack, listened to a CD of kids' songs until I just can't take "Poor Old Michael Finnigan" one more time, taped the pages back into a book that Enzo ripped apart, made some phone calls and sent some emails for work, kissed a boo-boo, washed a load of laundry, and wished my honey was here...

Now I sit in front of the computer, trying to type over two little boys trying to crawl up in my lap (the snack trick only gave me about 2 minutes), and I just have to laugh at how life changes. The wrinkled t-shirt and stained shorts I'm wearing are a far cry from the spotless white wedding dress I wore six years ago. I wouldn't have been caught dead on my wedding day with the messy ponytail and makeup-less face that I'm sporting today. But that hot summer day back in 2005, with all of its fancy preparations and memorable ceremony, set the stage for the days, months, and years that would follow.

It's easy to say "I do" when life is wonderful and you're surrounded by candlelight and flowers and loving friends and family, when both husband and wife look their very best and can't contain the smiles stretched across their faces. But bring the couple home from the honeymoon, back to the "real world", and throw them some bills, a few kids, a stressful job, a batch of burnt biscuits, and a home and car to maintain. "I do" loses its luster real fast once you figure out that you can't spend the rest of your life honeymooning. Though you continue to nurture your relationship as husband and wife, you eventually have to learn how to live productive lives as individuals. And that's when those vows that you nervously whispered on your wedding day will be tested the most.

So as I reflect on our time as husband and wife, once we arrived home from the honeymoon and got down to the nitty-gritty of marriage, I realize that the moments that stand out the most in my mind are the good times we've shared. And just like I can't remember the food we had at our reception or what my bouquet looked like, I know I won't ever forget what matters most about our marriage. The not-so-good times and the tears take a backseat -actually, let's go ahead and stash them in the trunk- when I consider all the ways we've grown closer to each other and to the Lord. The inconveniences and misunderstandings just pale in comparison to the overwhelming blessings that God has showered down on us.

I'm happy to report that today, after six years, three states, several jobs, two PRECIOUS boys, I am more in love with my husband than ever before. Did we quickly discover that marriage isn't always a cakewalk? Yes. Are there times that I could wring his tan little neck? You better believe it. Have I ever let him down? Guilty. Do I love him with all my heart forever and always? Yes, I do........

Happy Anniversary to the man who makes it happy!!!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Look what God did! ¡Mira lo que hizo Dios!

Matthew 18:20 says: "For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." We witnessed this dear promise of Christ first-hand at our annual Hispanic revival, and were truly amazed at the way God spoke to our hearts through guest speaker Roy Velez. Above all, we felt God's presence in our midst in each service.

To read more about Pastor Velez's church and ministry in Mission, TX: http://www.iglesiabautistacolonial.org/

God laid the ground-work for a life-changing revival on Thursday night (June 2nd). A few ladies prepared a delicious meal for all of the couples, and it was a real treat to sit down to a candle-lit dinner and relax.

As you look through these pictures, keep in mind that these couples are the foundation of our Spanish church. Most are new converts with a sincere desire to learn more about God. Each couple represents a family, and each family represents another opportunity to reach Mexico, Guatemala, Panama, Honduras, the WORLD for Christ.

After the meal and some interesting games, Pastor Velez spoke to us about the importance of effective communication in the marriage relationship. We left that night with our physical bellies full, but our hearts were hungry for more of God's Word. We were eager to see what else God had in store...

Friday night's service turned out to be another blessing. Pastor Velez preached a message in both Spanish and English about opening our eyes to what God is doing and what God wants to do in our lives.

 Our choir provided special music each night. I am so proud of each member's willingness to participate and be used of God in the choir.

Our ushers in their famous burgundy coats... The second one from the left is kinda cute! :)

The ushers with Pastor Velez (left) and our Hispanic pastor Alfredo Ledezma.

 With several folks visiting from other churches, we had our biggest crowd on Saturday night. The service was another memorable one, and we enjoyed a special time of fellowship afterwards.

In spite of the large crowd, we had TONS of sandwiches left over. :)

OK, I don't have any more pictures, but I do want to share a little more about the Sunday morning and evening services. During Sunday school, Pastor Velez shared the plan of salvation and how to lead a soul to Christ. It was a VERY helpful session and very practical for our new converts. Sunday morning's service followed, and although God spoke to my heart in a different way in each service, I was most impacted by the message Pastor Velez brought then. He spoke about the different ways God uses to get our attention, and how sometimes, He has to resort to drastic measures, maybe even chastise us, in order for us to look to Him when He is calling. The closing question that still burns in my heart even today was: How far will God have to go to get your attention? Even though I had to play the piano for the invitation, I prayed that God would soften my heart and help me to be attentive to His call.

I feel so blessed to be a part of the Spanish ministry at Faith FWB Church. Even as I went through these pictures, I was reminded once again that God is at work in our church and in our community, and it challenges me to do even more to impact the world for Christ!