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.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Art of Marriage

FamilyLife has produced a video-based conference called The Art of Marriage. It is different than any other video conference I have ever seen. It is also very different than the FamilyLife Weekend to Remember. You can see clips from The Art of Marriage here
View Video Clips from The Art of Marriage - FamilyLife.com.
Check it out and let us know what you think. We'd love to help you get this resource into your church or community. The world premiere for this event is February 11, 2011. If you have questions or would like to register we'd be glad to help you. Remember, check out the videos above!

Great Offer

If you would like to host The Art Of Marriage and you register before December 25th you receive a free gift pack from FamilyLife! You can register for your event online. If you have any questions, we'd be glad to answer them for you!

This gift pack includes:
    • Weekend to Remember Gift Certificate for you and your spouse
    • Rekindling the Romance book
    • Moments with You couples devotional book
    • Homebuilders Couples Series Building Your Marriage to Last study guide
    • When Christmas Came book
    • While They Are Sleeping book
    • Simply Romantic Coffee Dates book
    • And The Art of Marriage promotional materials

Friday, November 26, 2010

We are Thankful

At this season of giving Thanks, we wanted to take a moment to say, "Thank you for all you do to make a difference in lives of people and families for Christ. We couldn't do what we do without your faithful love, encouragement, prayers and support. You are indeed a blessing to us, more than you could ever realize!"

I think Paul says it best in his letter to the Philippians, and it is our heart for you too!

"I thank my God every time I remember you. In all of my prayers for all of you. I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Philippians 1:3-6

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Weekend to Remember Comments

Coeur d'Alene
November 19-21, 2010
Attendance 720
Prayed to receive Christ 16
Holy Spirit 98
Recommit life to Christ 107

  • "I was punched, beaten, picked up, cleaned up, and taught what I need to do. 1st make God the center of my life and my house, 2nd take care of my wife and 3rd take care of my family." (married 8 years)
  • "This conference provided a platform and a structure to talk about things we don't normally talk about, and are good to talk about. Thank you for helping us fine tune our marriage so it more accurately reflects Christ and the Church." (married 3 years)
  • "This event has changed me personally more than I ever thought it would. It was as a switch turned my brain on. I can't change him I can change me, which will change us!" (married 3 years)
  • "We came last year and loved it. We decided to come back this year just to refocus ourselves on our marriage. Although we did not experience anything profound this year it has helped us keep our eyes on the ultimate goal of oneness. It is an invaluable tool to help us continue a great marriage." (married 9 years)
  • "Breath taking experience the gift God gave me when He created my bride." (married 12 years)
  • "Weekend to Remember is truly that, we have been given a gift of knowledge on how to receive the grace of Jesus Christ to grow together spiritually and as a family and I thank you all from the depths of my heart." (married 1 year)
  • "I really wanted to come to this conference because I was looking to a separation from my husband and I wanted God to change my husband and his heart. What happened is that God spoke to me the entire weekend. He showed me where I have been wrong and where I needed to work. God softened my heart and has shown me how to improve and be a better wife and mother." (married 9 years)
  • "This conference allowed us to be more open with each other and trust each other more. My wife opened up to me, that after 18+ years of marriage, she said things about her past that she felt she couldn't trust me with before. This truth gave me a better understanding of why she acts the way she does. It opened up a new door of hope for us and I am looking forward to our future together." (married 18 years)
  • "It opened up old issues that needed to be resolved and provided a "safe" environment to work through them. It opened our hearts to each other and challenged us to be a better spouse and Godly parents. I feel truly blessed to have been here. I am walking away hope and love in my heart, not bitterness." (married 10 years)
  • "It's always so good for us to have uninterrupted time together. We are very aware of how awful our marriage had become. Everything about this weekend gave us the encouragement and tools for us to begin our climb out of the pit. Thank you for making it possible for us to begin our journey." (married 15 years)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Weekend to Remember Comments

November 19-21, 2010
Attendance 335
Invited Holy Spirit to take control 33
Recommitted marriage and Family to Christ 47

  • "Astronomical! So much insight and honesty. I came in to this conference thinking this was our last hope to save our marriage...now I'm leaving feeling like a rejuvenated partner in a strong friendship geared with the tools I need to awaken the bride of his youth he first fell in love with. Amazing! Thank you!" (wife, married 4 years)
  • "We missed the sessions on Friday night because of an argument we had on our way over. We arrived a mid-night because, at one point, we decided not to come and headed for home. As a result of attending this conference, we are committing to receiving our spouse--differences and weaknesses--forgiving them and working on companionship and commitment. We desire to be image bearers to other couples and to leave a legacy with our children. I was also inspired to be a stealth warrior princess!!!" (wife, married 9 years)
  • "Reminded me of why I fell in love with my wife and opened my eyes to my priorities in life." (husband, married 4 years)
  • "Being married 3 months we are just running into how to grow, encourage and glorify the Lord as one rather than individuals. FamilyLife gave us the tools to start doing this early. I am so glad I came to this at 3 months rather than 3 years. We both love each other deeply and have been pointed in the direction to show it."
  • "We have gone for 3 years now and we enjoy the weekend to remember so much we always plan on coming each year. It is so nice to have time to get her without the kids screaming. We miss the kids but we need our time." (husband, married 3 years)
  • "We talked, really talked." (wife, married 4 years)
  • "Broke down walls between us. I feel me again and have moved past some huge road blocks that we could not figure out how to get beyond."
  • "On me--underscored where I am failing, yet provided hope for doing it right! On us--provided hope, re-energized us. I asked my wife to marry me again--to throw away the marriage we don't like and forge ahead building the marriage we can feel we can have the one one God promised us." (husband, married 5 years)
  • "It gave us hope for our marriage. Even though we have only been married for less than a year, it's been a hard one. Coming here and knowing we weren't along and that God wants our marriage to succeed. We've learned how to communicate better. Thank you!" (wife, married 9 months

Monday, November 22, 2010

When Life is Changed Forever

I am amazed at God's work in the lives of people. We just had the awesome opportunity to serve together at the Portland Weekend to Remember. If you read the comments in a previous blog you saw some lives that were impacted. But I want to share how God moved on the hearts of three different couples to move them to a different Weekend to Remember.

Three couples were registered to attend the Bellingham conference and decided at the last minute to change their registration to the Portland event. None of the couples knew each other, but God knew them dearly and knew they needed to be at the Portland event instead. You see, each of these three couples had lost someone dear to them during the past year...a grandson, a granddaughter, a sister. Their losses were great, and because of His tender love and mercy, He put it on their hearts to be at the conference where Rick and Judy Taylor were two of the speakers.

In case you are not familiar with Rick and Judy's story, they lost their son Kyle to drowning when he was five years old. Kyle drowned trying to save his younger brother. Their story and their struggle to deal with their loss is written in their book When Life is Changed Forever.

Whenever Rick and Judy speak at an WTR event they share their story. God has used their story to minister to the hearts of so many who are dealing with loss. Loss isn't something you get over. It changes you and it changes life. I would encourage you to read their story and share it with others who may be walking through a crisis. Their story is lived out in the following verse from 2 Corinthians 1:4
"Praise be the the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,
who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble
with the comfort we ourselves have received from Christ."

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Weekend to Remember Comments

November 12-14, 2010
Attendance 688
Prayed to Receive Christ 12
Recommitment to Christ 132
Asked to Be Filled with the Holy Spirit 86

  • "Gave us a chance to have deeper conversation, more intimate, rather than the 'Daily Data Dump' we do every weeknight dinner. We had a chance to sit and look at each other with no distractions or responsibilities. I was also able to be transparent with my spouse as we talked about my intimacy concerns. We have been married 6 years and I have never shared those concerns."
  • "This has been the most important couples' conference I have ever been to. It has helped me greatly." Married 19 years
  • "It gave us the opportunity to talk in a safe place, with a prepared heart, about important issues in our marriage. We had a good marriage on Friday. Now we have an amazing marriage with tools to make it better day by day! Thank you!" Married 3 months
  • "This conference got us back together. Being in full time ministry has drained us and has been an 'extramarital affair' in our relationship. We, on this weekend have set some boundaries and some goals. thanks for the weekend and the challenge!" Married 3 years
  • "A couple days before the conference I wanted a divorce because of major differences and miscommunication between my husband and I. He said something that made me embarrassed and worthless. I was ready to give up. Now--we are starting over." Married 3 years
  • "We are committed not only to making this marriage work, but enjoy it to the fullest. I realize that my wife is a good gift from God and not my enemy. We really are on the same team!" Married 1 year
  • "It has helped us remember that our marriage is worth fighting for, that no sin, no wrong can go unforgiven and there is always a reason to fight for marriage." Married 2 years
  • "We come to the conference every few years because of the difference it made for us in our first year of marriage." Married 7 years
  • "Brought us back together in discussions that we needed to have...from half dead relationship to alive--beyond room-mates to a married couple."
  • "We have been through so much, worked through so many issues throughout our marriage. We couldn't seem to shake the past. This weekend was our fresh start, and second chance to have the marriage we've always wanted. Receiving each other was the missing piece in our journey toward oneness." Married 3 years

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Weekend to Remember Comments

Coeur d'Alene
November 5-7, 2010
Attendance 700
Prayed to Receive Christ 45

  • "I came here with very little hope and with a mental plan to divorce my spouse by the New Year. I'm leaving with a commitment to love him and see him as a child of God. Thank you for giving me hope and for giving our kids a future." Married 17 years
  • "I thought we were doing better than we are. We need a 360 degree change to make God the center and follow God's plan for our marriage and family." Married 1 year
  • Things have been shaky for us for a few months. We have been seeing a counselor for the last few months. This weekend has been so great for bringing us together and strengthening and filling in the gaps from that counsel. It has strengthened my faith. It reminded me of why it's so worth it to keep fighting for my marriage." Married 14 years
  • "We were able to reconnect and work forward on areas of our marriage that have been put on autopilot, especially in communications and ongoing intimacy. My husband's recent travel has made things challenging--thank you all!!! Married 1 year
  • "This conference was an 'eye-opener' with direct and specific impact on our (my wife and I) hearts about the keys to make our marriage what God has designed it to be!!! Married 38 years
  • "I am amazed at the amount of information. It is all very useful and slightly overwhelming until you decide a few things to work on at a time. This is an event you could attend each year and learn something new." Married 2 years
  • The effect this conference had on us was huge! When we arrived less than 48 hours ago we could barely speak to each other with love and tenderness. We have made great strides in learning to respect each other and embrace our differences. We have a renewed commitment to each other and to God." Married 17 years
  • "Oh my goodness, I don't even know where to start! I have already developed a greater level of love and respect for my husband! I want to pray and pray some more to be the greatest gift from God my husband could ask for." Married 9 years
  • "God is so merciful! It is such a miracle of God that we are here. (2 months ago my husband was living w/old girlfriend). We are so excited that God is working in both of us and for what is in store for our marriage. Married 38 years (wife of husband with quote below)
  • "In light of a recent infidelity, helped renew a passion for Christ and my wife. God is loving, cares, full or grace, and mercy. God is rebuilding what I tried to tear down. Praise God. Married 38 years (husband of wife with quote above)

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