Saturday, November 24, 2018
All glory goes to God Almighty for this amazing life I get to live, for this amazing church I get to be a part of and for an amazing woman to become my wife.
My family joined Remnant Fellowship Church in 2002 and shortly thereafter, moved from Oklahoma to Tennessee. There was obviously something very different about this church to warrant our whole family uprooting and moving across the country — and to this day we continue to reap the blessings of that decision. Being taught to put God first in everything and to remain under His authority on this earth has produced beautiful and fruitful lives.
Because I joined the church very young, without knowing it I adopted the mindset that “this was my parents' religion” and “I’m coming to church cause I have to.” However, I remember being at a crossroads in my life where I had to choose if I was going to walk out what I was hearing every week or go my own way. I remember making the choice to live for God wholeheartedly and I confessed to my parents everything that was in my heart. I quickly received countless confirmations that week from our deeply personal God that I had chosen the right path— and since making that decision, my life has only been blessed!
"After several years of walking my faith and putting this truth into practice, I got to know Lauren. Immediately I was attracted to her zealousness for God and for His Kingdom." - Aaron
After several years of walking my faith and putting this truth into practice, I got to know Lauren. Immediately I was attracted to her zealousness for God and for His Kingdom. Every time she’d talk about the church or her love for God I’d think, “Do I love God as much as her?” or “Do I take care of the church as much as she does?” and I would have an instant drive to grow in my relationship with God more! She would sharpen me and hold me accountable, even in general conversation. This focus on God and what truly matters in life is what I wanted in a lifelong partner so I knew early on that this was the girl that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with.
God has truly moved so quickly in these past months and the engagement came together so perfectly. In July, I bought a home for the two of us and then shortly thereafter bought her a ring. With the help of so many selfless church members, (Joseph Langsdon, Elisabeth Hannah, Scott Sabo, John Bailey, Joya Lindgren, to name a few) I was able to propose to Lauren on September 22, 2018.
After a formal church assembly on that night, where we had been celebrating the Feast of Tabernacles, we got someone to get Lauren to a small barn on the back of the Ashlawn estate. After she was dropped off, we slid back these giant wooden doors. Inside those doors was a huge screen with a video being projected on it that I created for her. I walked out of the barn and proposed to her there. It was so beautiful and perfect! We then went back to the church and we were greeted by so many friends!
I am truly so undeserving of a life and of a relationship like this. I am the lucky one and I do not deserve Lauren at all!!!
After seeking for the truth for years, my aunt, Elisabeth Lorenz, found Remnant Fellowship/Weigh Down Ministries in 2002. It was the fruit of my aunt living out pure love for GOD first that made my mom, Joya Lindgren, call Elisabeth and ask her how to change her life, and this is when Elisabeth introduced us to Remnant Fellowship. My mom has shared she was tired of feeling empty and hopeless and wanted to give my sister, Kaitlynn and me hope for our future, so we never had to feel the way she did. In 2004, my mom, sister, and I joined Remnant Fellowship and later that year moved from Colorado to Tennessee to live with my aunt. After joining this church based off of a love relationship with GOD, we have found our purpose as stated in Deuteronomy 6:5, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength."
Growing up I had the opportunity to attend public school from elementary through high school and now college. During my high school years, the motives of my heart were truly put to the test. Even though I may not have been caught up in immoral or other worldly pursuits, my struggles were more in my mind and my heart. I struggled with feeling left out and sad, being lonely, controlling, and comparing myself to others. I praise God for Gwen Shamblin teaching me at a young age how to run to GOD in my pain. Through the hardest of circumstances, I can attest that loving God first will never fail. “We cannot stop the lies, but we can stop listening to them.” Gwen Shamblin, History of the Love of God, page 307.
It has been a joy and a delight for God to allow me to use my gift of babysitting to help serve the church. Gwen, Elizabeth Hannah and Elle Shamblin trained my sister and me when I was in the third grade, to lovingly assist with their children/grandchildren. Gwen has taught us to always be on the watch for the children’s needs, to truly understand the child and anticipate the need before it is said. Getting to grow up with these children has allowed me the privilege of getting to witness the deep love Gwen has with her grandchildren. I have also had the honor of getting to travel with their family and I have experienced the love, generosity and compassion of their entire families. After thirteen years of getting to be in the homes of the Shamblin/Hannah families, I can attest to the consistency, the abounding love, the overall peace and joy in their families. I have been constantly inspired by their example and feel so close to each of them. This example has changed who I am and my relationship with my parents and sister for the better in every way.
"I was delighted, honored and grateful to say, “YES"— saying yes to have the privilege of spending the rest of my life with the most Godly and righteous man." - Lauren
I am astounded that we get answered prayers through a relationship with our Creator and each answered prayer makes me fall more in love with this amazing GOD. Through the teachings of our church, I learned how to find help from God in every area of life. One particular area that God really helped me was academics. There was a particular score I needed to get on the ACT in order to receive scholarship money. After taking the exam 3 times and still not obtaining the score I needed, I sought God and asked if there was any area that I was missing His lead. One Sabbath morning, I felt convicted of a certain area that I had been lacking and I immediately made the changes in my life that I sensed God was leading me to make. The next month I took the ACT again and my score jumped dramatically...so much so that I was able to get a full scholarship to college! I will be graduating with zero debt, which was all GOD. This has nothing to do with me being smart or studying more, but it is a result of getting to put into practice what I have been taught at Remnant Fellowship to look to God for everything. God came back in and took care of my every need! I am convinced that the most important thing in life is wanting to please our generous Creator by obeying his commands, which are such a delight!
After growing up together and getting to be a part of the Remnant Fellowship Youth Group, I was attracted to Aaron Wheeler for his hard working and servant heart. He was always in the "middle of the pack" and using his gifts in photography, film, and music to serve the church. In 2015, a long-time desire of my heart was heard by God, and I had the distinct privilege of getting to date Aaron. God has used these past few years to refine and strengthen our relationship with Him and each other. One of our greatest joys has been to serve as youth encouragers to the 300+ youth group.
After the resounding and joyous Feast of Tabernacles Assembly, I got a call asking if I could go to Ashlawn estate really quickly to help John Quinn with an errand. As we approached the barn in the back of Ashlawn, John offered to come get my door with an umbrella because it was raining. Still oblivious to what was happening, I got out of the car. After John closed my door he started to make his way back to the driver seat and drove off. Standing there with confusion and shock, I was surprised to hear something behind me. As I turned around, the barn doors opened and I was surprised to be presented with the most perfect video that Aaron graciously made. Within the video, Aaron recreated memories from some of the photos that we have taken over the years. As the plot of the video was reaching the climax, I was astounded with the sight of Aaron coming out from behind the doors. With the most beautiful setting with the rain, the glow from the lights, the sweetest song and standing there with the man that I love so dearly, Aaron got on one knee and asked me to marry him. I was delighted, honored and grateful to say, “YES"— saying yes to have the privilege of spending the rest of my life with the most Godly and righteous man.
Then the night grew sweeter and sweeter as we were greeted by our dear family members and loved ones, along with the best photographers and videographers. In addition to all that has been done, we were once again delightfully surprised and honored to be greeted with hundreds of our closest friends after returning to the church to continue with the Feast of Tabernacles celebration.
I cannot express my appreciation to Joe and Gwen for always opening up their home and property, to Joseph Langsdon who worked closely with Aaron and helped prepare for the proposal, to Jonathan Hagans, Scott Thissen, Scott Sabo and John Bailey for waiting in the rain and capturing the most beautiful footage...to John Quinn, Abby McDonald, Brandon and Elizabeth, Michael and Elle, Patrick and Amy, Erin Moore and many more who have helped with this engagement. All credit and Glory goes to God. I pray that He is forever praised through Aaron and me and our relationship!