Saturday, November 30, 2019
My family joined the Remnant Fellowship Church one month before I was born. I have had the honor and privilege of being born and raised in this wonderful place. I do not know where my life would be without these teachings. But sadly, I did not take advantage of this opportunity. I did not fully commit my life to God. I would obey when I wanted to obey and when I thought it might make me look good in front of others; but in my heart, I was not interested in living for God as much as I was interested in living for myself. Through middle school and high school, I kept one foot in and one foot out, allowing the sin to grow in my heart. In my last year of high school, I realized I had to make a choice. God revealed to me all the pride, greed, lust, and anti-authority I had in my heart, and I knew I had to get it all out. When I finally decided to pursue righteousness, the amount of love and support I received from family and friends was abundant. Through all of the testing, I have been surrounded by people who love me and only want to point me back to God. With the help and guidance from my parents and the amazing leadership we have at this Church, along with the incredible teaching from Mrs. Gwen Lara that we have the chance to hear constantly, I feel closer to God now than I ever have before! I know I have further to go and more to learn, but I know I can do it because of the bountiful resources we have in this place and countless examples of how to live a Godly and righteous life. And every step in this direction has been so blessed.
In the past couple of years, the reality of blessings for obedience and curses for disobedience has become very clear. I could see how blessed my older siblings were in their relationships and marriages because of the righteous lives they were living. I have always wanted a wife and family, and watching my siblings find that in their lives made me pray that I could find it, too.
As I got to know her better, I saw how beautiful she was on the inside as well as the outside. She is one of the sweetest, kindest, smartest, most thoughtful, and most sincere people I have ever met. She has the biggest heart for God, and I could tell that her one and only goal in life is to please God and lay her life down for others.- Matthew
Brianne and her family had visited Nashville a couple of times, and she was close with my sisters, but I didn’t really notice her until the summer of 2018. I asked her to dance at a wedding, and afterwards we started talking more after she went back to Wisconsin (where she lived at the time). As I got to know her better, I saw how beautiful she was on the inside as well as the outside. She is one of the sweetest, kindest, smartest, most thoughtful, and most sincere people I have ever met. She has the biggest heart for God, and I could tell that her one and only goal in life is to please God and lay her life down for others. Shortly after we started dating, God made it clear to me that Brianne is the woman that I am meant to be with for the rest of my life. I knew that I needed to save up for a ring and look for a steady job in my field that could support us and help me work towards a career. God provided the perfect ring for the perfect price, which was even more clarification that I was headed in the right direction in my relationship with Brianne. Shortly after, God blessed me with a full-time internship in my field that I can work through the rest of college and can potentially open doors for bigger opportunities down the road. God provided the perfect opportunity for me to propose at the gracious invitation of another couple who were having their Blessing Shower, and a lot of our close friends and family were going to be there. The Blessing Shower was held at Ashlawn Estate. As the evening started to wind down, I found some excuse to walk her up to the roof. With the youth violin players playing “Canon in D” as we walked up the stairs to the roof, I took her hand, got down on one knee, and asked her to marry me. The moment was more perfect than I could have ever imagined! I know that it could not have been done without God. Everything came together so quickly and so many of our friends helped to make it very special. I could not have picked out a more perfect match for me. I know that God has brought us together and I cannot wait to spend the rest of our lives growing closer to God together. I love Brianne more than I have ever loved another person, and I cannot wait to see what God has in store for our lives as we start our family and live this amazing life for Him!
My mom first found Weigh Down in 1999 when she read The Weigh Down Diet book written by Gwen Shamblin Lara. In 2005, our family of five moved to Shizuoka, Japan for my dad’s job. Miraculously, God allowed the The Weigh Down Diet book to end up on a bookshelf in our house in Japan. My mom found the book again in 2008 and started to change. My sister soon followed our mom and lost all of her weight and became a sweeter sister.
As a young child, I was a thin eater and had no focus on food; but as I became a teenager, my focus shifted to food, self, and praise of man. With that I gained 15 pounds along with many more pounds of greed and pride. My anger was so out of control that my family was constantly afraid to be around me. My sister would not talk to me, and my parents could not trust me. My relationship with God was non- existent, and because of that my heart was hurting. At 14 years old I knew there was something wrong with my relationship with God and that there was something missing. Even though my mom and sister were changing right in front of my eyes, I never understood that what they had found was the answer I had been seeking. I cried out to God and pleaded with Him to show me what I was missing. Less than a year later, my mom encouraged me to watch the Weigh Down Basics class, and it started to impact my heart. We joined the Church a few months later, and I immediately knew that Remnant Fellowship was different from all other churches that I had ever visited.
Our family moved to Wisconsin from Japan when I was 16, and I was so grateful because we were so much closer to the Church. God used the next year and a half to do total heart reconstruction surgery on me. I lost 15 pounds, I have no more anger, my siblings and I are best friends, my focus is no longer on myself but on what God wants, and I have a relationship with God.- Brianne
Our family moved to Wisconsin from Japan when I was 16, and I was so grateful because we were so much closer to the Church. God used the next year and a half to do total heart reconstruction surgery on me. I lost 15 pounds, I have no more anger, my siblings and I are best friends, my focus is no longer on myself but on what God wants, and I finally have a relationship with God. Looking back at all the pain that I was in at such a young age makes me all the more grateful for all the future pain from which God saved me.
By far the biggest blessing and gift from God is the honor of getting to know Matthew! During the Summer of 2018, we started texting each other from separate states, and before we had been on our first date I already knew that he was the one with whom I wanted to spend the rest of my life. In January of 2019, God allowed me to move to Brentwood, Tennessee, and our relationship continued to grow. On May 31st, 2019, Matthew walked me up to the roof of the pool house at Ashlawn, the beautiful estate home of Gwen and Joe Lara where he had the violin ensemble, two videographers, a photographer there as he proposed against the backdrop of the setting sun. I praise God every day that He allowed me to find my Prince Charming and get married in this beautiful place! I know that our marriage will be blessed as long as we continually seek God first in everything we do and say!