Category: Stanglin Family (page 1 of 16)

Hope in What’s Up

“We have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints — the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the Gospel that has come to you.” ~Colossians 1:4-6

It’s interesting that Paul tells the Christians in Colosse that hope is the source of their faith and love. Their hope doesn’t come from their faith — it’s the opposite. Their faith is grounded in their hope. That means hope, at least in this setting, is not about their mood or their attitude. It’s about the thing that is hoped for. It’s the thing that is stored up in heaven. This future glory with Christ, these eternal promises of God we know are coming true.

Not hope in the things of this world. Not hope in our careers or family, not hope in degrees or scholarships, not hope in elections or supreme courts, not hope in science or technology — hope in what God is holding for us in heaven. That kind of certainty is what gives birth to a faith in Christ Jesus, a faith that our God has acted decisively in his Son as our Savior. It generates a deep love for all the saints, a love that’s increasingly for others instead of self. This kind of biblical hope is a strong knowing, a confident conviction that impacts our every thought and deed.

Christian hope is not blind optimism with no foundation to it. It’s not, “I hope the Cowboys win the Super Bowl.” That’s just baseless positivism. Like when George Lloyd addressed the House of Commons on Armistice Day in 1918: “I hope we may say that on this fateful morning came an end to all wars.” That’s just wishful thinking. It just means, “I hope so.” It’s not really based on anything concrete.

That’s what led Alexander Pope to write: “Blessed is the one who expects nothing for he shall never be disappointed.” In other words, don’t get your hopes up and you’ll never be let down.

For Christians, our hopes are always way up! We expect everything!

We expect that our God is at work in this world through Jesus Christ and that he is reconciling all people and all things together in himself. We expect that God is right now fixing everything that’s broken and making right everything that’s gone wrong. Our hope is secure because God himself has sealed it by placing his Holy Spirit inside us.

“All over the world, this Gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth.” ~ Colossians 1:6

That Christian faith and that mutual love and that common hope is changing our lives and changing the world and connecting us together forever.

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Whitney and I took a quick road trip to Austin over the weekend to see our nephew, Isaac, play cornerback for the Brentwood Christian High School Bears. We also paid our respects at the Stevie Ray Vaughan statue at Auditorium Shores, ate some famous Austin barbecue at Oakwood BBQ, cruised the shops on South Congress, climbed Mount Bonnell for the amazing views of the Colorado River, and enjoyed a pre-game meal at the Chuy’s on Lamar. Isaac dominated and the Bears beat some Catholic school 24-0.

 

 

 

 

 

That’s a good weekend.

Go Cards.

Allan

Double Knot

Our middle daughter is already on her second marriage.
Valerie has been married twice but never widowed or divorced.
It took two weddings in the middle of this global pandemic to successfully tie her knot with David. And Friday’s wedding was a spectacular event.

Carrie-Anne and I are both grateful and humbled by the numbers of long-time friends who traveled great distances to be with our family on this special night. Dan and Jennifer and Meredith made the drive up from Marble Falls and Mike brought LeeAnn (and those Virdell granddaughters!) to make those awesome cakes. David and Shanna and Delaney, John and Suzanne, and Lance from the Legacy Church. Jason and Tiersa, Chris and Liz, Kevin and Anita, and Brian and Terry from our days together in Mesquite. All the familiar faces from our Central church family. And our family and relatives from Austin and Dallas and East Texas and Oklahoma City.  All these good people who have poured themselves into our lives for so many years. What a blessing from God to be together for this special weekend.

Thank you to everyone who joined us for this celebration of David and Valerie. Thank you for your love and your friendship. Thank you for all the times we’ve prayed together, eaten together, laughed and cried together, and moved boxes out of each other’s attics. Thank you for what you mean to our daughters and our family. We are so blessed by our God because of you.

Peace,

Allan

Dear Valerie & David

Your wedding in the nearly-empty Central chapel Friday night was a beautiful event. It wasn’t the wedding we had been planning and paying for and praying about for the past several months, but it was sweet. And wonderful. And memorable. And I am so grateful to you both for the magnificent honor and great joy of presiding over the ceremony. Thank you for that blessing.

 

 

 

 

The way you two have handled the past three months together has been admirable. The way you’ve navigated the uncertainty together has been really beautiful. The wedding week and the ceremony itself are not what either of you had hoped for. But that’s just like marriage. Your lives together are never going to be exactly the way you plan. Things happen. Things change. Marriage is typically what happens while your plans are falling apart.

 

 

 

 

So much of this has been so up in the air. Where are you going to work? Where are you going to live? Tulsa? A third-floor apartment in Tulsa, Oklahoma? Nobody plans that! And the wedding dates and the changes and the three different sets of invitations and you two being apart and the government changing the rules in Texas and Virginia every two hours and trying to get the marriage license from the closed down Randall County Courthouse — it’s been completely nuts! Everything’s been on-the-fly and mostly out of your personal control.

 

 

 

 

But you two have handled all of the uncertainty and chaos so well because your love for each other is so rock-solid. Your love and commitment to each other is so stable and permanent and good.

 

 

 

 

I’ve done maybe 30-35 weddings in my life and I’ve never once read from 1 Corinthians 13. I think it’s overdone, personally. And if you’re not careful, it can sound cliche and expected and it loses its punch. But you two have been living this foundational passage, you’ve embodied it together, in front of everybody who knows you.

 

 

 

 

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”

 

 

 

 

That’s what God’s love is like for us — this committed, unshakable, sacrificial love that our Father in heaven has for all of us. And you two have demonstrated that same love. The way you’ve dealt with the past three months or so is going to serve you well in your marriage. Because life is mostly out of your control. Because your plans will sometimes fall apart and tough times are going to happen.

 

 

 

 

People get sick, people change jobs and move, people die. Cars break down, the economy tanks, kids talk back. The water heater breaks, the roof leaks, the toilet overflows — basically everything that has anything to do with water has the potential to wreck your life. And you two are going to have disagreements. It’s always something.

But when you come together on the same side to tackle a thing — that’s the way you do it. Your love for each other and the commitment to your relationship that we’ve all seen is going to serve your marriage very well.

 

 

 

 

God bless you both. And God bless you as one.

I’m looking forward to doing it again in two months.

I love you,

Dad

OC Homecoming 2019

With two of our daughters at Oklahoma Christian University, we take the opportunity to get back to campus much more often than we ever have before. And we always have a blast. This past weekend was OC’s Homecoming which means the annual Delta Alumni Breakfast at Bob Elliott’s house. I feel really blessed to know as many of the younger Delta guys as I do my own peers. It’s so cool to hang out with Legacy kids like Dillon and Colton, Central kids like Brayden, and my nephew Asa. And it’s so much fun getting caught up with Mike Osburn and Scott Williams and other guys with whom I’ve done jail time. I don’t know what it’s like at the Theta breakfast or other OC social service club alumni get-togethers. But at 10:00, they’re having to run us out. How do you sufficiently cover all the necessary talk about camp outs, knives, political rallies, ACLU lawsuits, pumpkins, parties, cars, float trips, Spring Sings, Homecoming bloats/goats/moats, concerts, apartment furnishings, probations, nicknames, and near-death-experiences in just two hours?

 

 

 

 

Valerie was in charge of the OC Homecoming parade. I’m not sure how that happens but she got it and she owned it! She had to keep up with all the floats, approve all the designs, secure all the convertibles and antique cars, put everything in order, oversee the script, and get it started and finished on time. She killed it! And she looked super cute riding in the blue convertible VW with David in the seat right behind her.

Peace,

Allan

Halloween Throwback

A vintage photo of life in the ’70s at 2512 Terra Alta Circle. This is my sister, Rhonda, and me after Trick ‘r Treating on Halloween night 1972. I had just turned six, Rhonda was four. Notice that Rhonda is wearing a hand-me-down bunny costume I had worn the year before — classic. Notice the Dairy Queen logo on the free gimmee bags — our grandmother worked at the DQ at Prairie Creek Lane and Bruton Road. Notice the elaborate pattern on the curtains and the orange living room (no, this is the den!) chair. Notice the terrible plastic masks, the masks with the tiny little mouth and nose holes that were just big enough to suffocate a small child, the masks that took about 90-seconds to build up on the inside a disgusting warm glaze of sweat and breath. I can feel it now!

Happy Halloween!

Allan

Back to OC

We’re still two weeks away from classes beginning at Oklahoma Christian University, but we moved Valerie and Carley back to Edmond Saturday. Both of our younger daughters have leadership roles with OC’s annual orientation next week, “Earn Your Wings.” So they were going to get there early anyway. But Val needs to be there even earlier to attend training as a new residence director. Well, we’re not making two trips. So, they’re both in.

Valerie is in a different on-campus apartment with just one roommate — one of the perks of being a residence director. And Carley is sharing a dorm suite with a bunch of her buddies.

 

 

 

 

 

At this point, the whole thing has become a foregone routine. We eat dinner at Alfredo’s in Yukon Friday night on the way to my sister Rhonda’s house in Edmond, spend the night with Rhonda and her family, move the girls in at OC Saturday morning, eat lunch at The Garage, go shopping for the girls (trash cans, storage drawers, milk, bread, chips, ice-cream sandwiches), fill up their cars with gas, and be back in Amarillo before dark.

Valerie is a senior Youth Ministry major. She’s graduating in April with a Youth and Family Ministry degree and is in the beginning stages of looking for a full-time youth ministry gig. If you know of a Church of Christ that’s looking for a dynamic, hard-working, self-starting, female youth minister with a heart for young people, get in touch with Val right now. She’s going to be in high demand.

Carley is a sophomore Psychology major looking to complete her bachelor’s degree in under four years and earn her doctor’s degree from OSU or UT or some huge state school in less time than that.

Carrie-Anne is also starting back to school as the Culinary Arts Director at Canyon and Randall High Schools in the Canyon ISD. She’s in a brand new kitchen in a new building and will probably be living/teaching out of boxes for the first few weeks.

As for Whitney and me, we’re trying to squeeze in a couple of more Sod Poodles games before the season ends.

Peace,

Allan

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