Tom and Laura Clifton, serving as missionaries with FamilyLife, a ministry of Cru.

On our blog you can read the latest conference quotes, find out about new things happening within FamilyLife, keep updated with our family, find links to helpful sites, and also find out how to join our support team.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Seattle Weekend to Remember

Top 10 Conference Quotes

April 24-26, 2009
Attendance 325
Accepted Christ 11

Here are the Top Ten Comments from the second Seattle Weekend to Remember Conference:

Before this conference my wife and I were on the outs. We had the divorce papers ready and were just waiting to be signed. This conference has renewed love, admiration and spirituality in our relationship. We have re-committed our lives to God and to each other. Thank you for saving another marriage and bringing another couple closer than they ever were before!

FamilyLife is the most effective tool I have seen to minister to those that are most difficult to reach, the affluent and middle class American! As a pastor this conference and ministry has changed my life and marriage

I want to start re-prioritizing my life right now! This has made me feel like I re-met my husband, we are at honeymoon stage, but even better w/our foundation of experience and God!

I liked how the conference is designed so we could get lost together in the big group & really focus on each other & our marriage.

Better understanding of our differences and how to meet each other needs. I know how important it is to be positive and patient instead of selfish. I look forward to falling in love with my wife over and over again the rest of our lives.

[The highlight of the conference was] all of it. We were days away from separating. You gave us hope.

We left feeling new hopes of being able to restore a marriage filled with bitterness and resentment. Our better understanding of roles and the priorities of putting God 1st spouse 2nd, and kids 3rd will help us decrease stress and find a peace in our marriage.

Life change and encouragement!

I have been shown that no matter what I go through, and where I go through it, I will always have my wife. If I treat her badly, God sees and my relationship with him will reflect accordingly.

I appreciate that Biblical matters weren’t touched on until day two. Had we started the weekend discussing God, my husband would have closed down. As it was I think he was receptive J

[The highlight of the conference was] the love letter from my wife. It built me up and showed me the kind of man I always knew I was, but just can’t see sometimes.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Holding On Instead of Letting Go

First Birthday Celebration

In April we celebrated MaryElise's first birthday. It was a fun celebration of her life. One thing we had for her to wear was a little princess birthday hat. The hat was fuzzy along the bottom and fit on like a hairband. When I put it on her in the high chair she didn't seem to mind. Later in the day however, whenever it was put on her head she cried. In fact, she even started crying when she saw the hat.

As evening approached we had cake and presents. Sometime during the opening of presents I wondered what MaryElise would do if we handed her the birthday hat. So, one of her brothers picked up the hat and I handed it to her. She took it in her hand and looked at me with tears in her eyes as if to say, "What are you doing to me?" She cried, but continued to hold on to the hat. All she had to do was let go and move away from the hat but she didn't let go. She held on tight and cried even harder. Finally I took the hat away and comforted my baby.

I learned a lesson that day about my own life. How much am I like MaryElise? There are things in my own life that I continue to hold on to that I really need to let go of...hurt feelings that cause bitterness to grow, unkind words that need to be stopped before they leave my lips, temptations that I need to flee from rather than embracing. It is so easy to hold onto things that hurt us and others rather than letting go and walking away. God gives us the ability by His Spirit to flee from temptation, to forgive when we have been hurt, and to speak words of kindness and truth.

I am so thankful for my precious daughter and the way God continues to use her life to teach me more about myself and about Him too!

Friday, April 24, 2009

April Fools Day

A Mixed-Up Breakfast

On April Fool's Day I had a surprise for breakfast...
The kids came to the table and found their orange juice in their cereal bowls and their cereal in their cups. Whitney and Caleb loved the idea. Benjamin, however, resisted the change.
All I was wanting to do was to have some fun and to make a memory. For my child who doesn't like surprises, this was too much! He poured his cereal onto his napkin (the milk hadn't been poured yet) and tried to pour his orange juice into his cup. In his attempt to keep things as they should be he missed out on the fun of the moment.
I wondered how much I do this with God. He throws curveballs into my plans and rather than swing at a different pitch I stand there refusing to swing until I get the pitch I am looking for.
In Jeremiah 29:11 it says, "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'" Perhaps if I started off each day giving my plans to God and allowing Him to be the one to lead (instead of me) I could learn to enjoy the surprises in each day too!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Top Ten Comments

Seattle 1, April 17-19, 2009

Here are the top ten comments chosen from the first Seattle Weekend to Remember Conference. Out of 354 people in attendance, 46 prayed to receive Christ! To God be the glory!

1st two quotes from a husband/wife couple…
Him: “Opened my eyes. Showed me that I need to change my life and the way I think about things.”
Her: “We were over. We had destroyed each other beyond repair we thought. Through some friends here we are and we are committed to have a great marriage and family.”

“Huge swings in emotion. Could feel the spiritual struggle. We packed our bags twice to leave. But we committed to stay and we grew closer. Many tears and yet we communicated and grew. Thank you for setting us on our way. We want to come back and feel our marriage is great.” Wife

That God is in control of my husband (not me ;) ) and me. I need to remember that and let Him do his work/plan.

We learned how to talk to each other with so much more respect for each other! We rearely spoke to each other w/depth and understanding, until this weekend.

We both realized what we are missing and what we need. This was an excellent step in our marriage. Thank you.

A loving gentle reminder to live out a great marriage not just a good one.

We are blessed to have been a part of this conference. We are separated right now and have been on the verge of divorce for the past year. We feel a sense of hope and renewed strength.

We now have practical tools to success and grow in our marriage instead of just living together.

Refreshing. We have attended many marriage events over the 28 year period of our married life. This one was way up top of the list. We realized just how in love we are. Thank you.

Thursday, April 2, 2009


Are You Ready?

Are you ready to be able to share your faith? Robert Lewis, along with FamilyLife, has created LifeReady and the first resource available is Explore. Explore teaches you how to share your faith one on one in a way that is non-threatening and powerful. We had the opportunity to be a part of the audience when this was being taped and we'd love for you to check out this incredible resource. LifeReady
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