Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Dear Todd and Angie,



        Where do I even begin...I suppose thanking you for answering the phone when someone needed help would be a good place to start. Someone that you didn't know anything about, there whole story, or have any reason to care about. All you knew was there was a mother with two girls in Michigan that needed move to Tennessee, and I have come to realize that you chose to help me for the same reasons I chose to let you. 

         The Lord new what He was doing when He put me with you. I don't think that had it been anyone else, that my family would be together today. God knew that it was going to take an immense amount of strength and faith to guide his miracle into place.  You two have, and offer all that and more. Our hearts were nearly hardened, and I thought we had passed the point of any return. I didn't even know who I was anymore when I arrived in Tennessee. You have not just been so selfless to just take us in, pat us off and send us on our way, but you have gone above and beyond and followed through with what you started by getting involved, unconditionally. So thank you for your faith. You are both heavenly warriors, armed with love, and were willing to march through thorns to retrieve an unseen flower.  Thank you for asking me questions, thank you for sincerely wanting to know my heart. By answering and exploring my heart with you I was reminded of who I was. Thank you for loving me for who I am and not for who you thought I could be if I changed. 

        When I moved out of your home briefly in July you let me learn on my own that it was not in God's plan. When I was going to get a divorce you offered to go with me. When I wanted to stop the divorce you brought my husband to me against all reasoning from our horrible past, you had faith in us. It is your obedience in God and your irrevocable commitment to your faith in Jesus that our family is together today. You believed in His plan and taught me to do do the same without pressure. You set a pure and genuine example in your daily life. I think,  you didn't really know what a powerful message that you were and still are sending to me without the use of words. Much of your example has aided in my growing relationship with Christ. 

       I you may or may not realize this, I'm pretty sure you do, but I just want to thank you for knowing where to draw the line with me. You guys know exactly when to be there for me and exactly when leave me in my sorrows. If not for that, I would have been robbed of the deep connection that I have with God. The night's spent when you two knew I was in pain, but left me be are the nights that I was comforted so well in prayer. These times of grief that you didn't sit with me while I was in tears about my screwed up life were the ones that were the most healing in my faith. The nights when you were there are the times that I learned what faith and grace were through your words of wisdom. You help us help ourselves which is easier said than done and I want you to know that I acknowledge and appreciate that too. 
     
       Angie, since you have taught me how to sew, not only have I acquired a new skill but I am now able to put into words a visual for this experience.  I truly feel like it is God's hands guiding torn, flimsy fabric through a machine, creating something beautiful. We are mismatching pieces that have fallen apart and slowly with a lot of work, we are getting patched with vibrant colors and strong thread to last forever. He is working so lovingly and carefully and you two are the needle and thread complying with His every move until His work is done. Once again, thank you for your faith.

        Your hand in our redemption goes so much further than what has transpired in or marriage just these past few months. Our daughters futures have been rewritten as well as Jason and mine. Not only are they going to dodge the broken home upbringing but, our little girls are going to be raised in a house that makes Biblically based decisions on a day to day bases beyond the time that we are living with you. It is in my prayers that one day they will continue a legacy of unconditional love in the unity of the Body of Christ. After being on the receiving end of so many blessings through the generosity of others I know there will come a time when I hope we are able to give as much to others as you have given to us. Our counselor says you are putting treasures in heaven by by what you are doing for us, I want to do that too. It boggles my mind to think about how many other people you are helping besides us through your gifts in writing and music among other things.  There literately people's lives that you have touched that you will never meet and your kindness and good works will live on long beyond your earthly life. WOW, that is a fact, not an opinion. You have tended a harvest in my family as humble servants of God that will grow for generations. 

       That's mostly why I decided to write you a public letter. I wanted thank and encourage anyone else who loves others the same Godly way you love us. Also, there is always the possibility that some random person will read this and be inspired to maybe love someone else well despite their situation or personal choices in there life. Kind of like the paying it forward and having things come full circle. 

       Also, when it comes down to it, you are just really great friends. Not just for all you've done for us but because I am so happy and blessed that I even know both of you and your daughters. As individuals, your both hilarious and can tell stories as a couple and separately that crack me up. Working in a bar for years goes hand in hand with a lot of crazy stories and jokes, and you guys can tell a great story with more animation and character than I've ever heard. I love that you cease the day, and get the most out of life in your work and family, and I love that your not perfect and acknowledge that through all of it. I love that know matter how much praise you receive, you remain humble and that takes discipline. Your just people like everyone else and I'm thankful and glad to know two people that choose to live so well. 

     I could go on and on for days for all the things I'm thankful to you for. But you guys know how thankful we are about having somewhere to live and all the other things that you are doing for us. And I try to express my thanks by helping you as much as I can. I felt like I just needed to put into words the impact that you've had on my soul. I don't think there is any amount of house work that could cover that so I did my best to relay a big message of appreciation in a little letter. I  I love you guys,
Candice Hamilton


     

          

24 comments:

  1. That was b e a u t i f u l l y written. I am a random person who just stumbled onto your blog--can't remember how I did. I read your story from the beginning. I do not know Todd and Angie, but they are generous in every sense of the word. I can only imagine how grateful you must feel. In closing...I have to tell you, Candice, that I admire your strength, courage, faithfulness and determination to make the changes for you and your children. You give hope to others in the same or similar situation. Bless you and your family.

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  2. Gosh, Candice... I'm crying... I can only imagine Angie's a snotty, blubbering mess *grin*

    What a sweet, beautiful letter. Thank you for showing us yet another side of Angie and Todd they would never dream of telling us themselves.

    Thankyou, Lord, for all you do for Your children.

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  3. Your heart is evident here. I almost feel as if I was invading such a raw, vulnerable, humble moment...

    God bless you in all you do. You are an inspiration to me...

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  4. I hope you realize that you have a great way with words... the way you form sentences is just beautiful.

    2 Corinthians 1:3-7 came to mind when I read your letter.

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  5. Absolutely beautiful!!

    God is not through yet!! :)

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  6. Your letter to Todd and Angie is so beautiful and the words painted such an incrediable picture of who they are and who you and your family are in as you have a closer walk with the Father. I pray that you and your husband continue to heal in the Lord's presence and that the legacy will indeed be passed on to your girls a LOVE for CHRIST like none other seen before. Thank you for sharing, for being open and vulnerable before the Lord and allowing us a glimpse into that so that possible we too could be impacted in the way that the Father would have us to be by your story. Keep writing because you truly are talented with words.

    Daily laying it at the Master's feet!
    Laura Ann

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  7. That's so sweet Candice! I am SURE that you are as much of a blessing to Angie as she has been to you, and I am so thankful God brought you guys together!! ((hugs))

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  8. What a beautiful letter and what faithful servants Todd and Angie are! Your story is the stuff we know only Christ can write.

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  9. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful......hugs and love to all of you! :)

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  10. That was an awesome letter & I'm so happy for you & your family's new beginning. I pray the Lord continues to bless you & yours in every way possible.

    I have my sister living with me & she is in a "similar" situation. I hope pray our situation can have the same ending.

    ~Christi in California~

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  11. Hey Candice,

    That is a lovely letter. What's the story behind that picture at the end?

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  12. Hey Kaira!
    It's a picture that Angie took and posted
    on her blog about me in August. Hope you are well!

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  13. What a beautiful letter and I am sure it is deepy appreciated by both Todd and Angie. I hadn't had the opportunity previously to pop over here to read your story and get to know you. I wish you all the very best with your journey. I had (through Angie) offered you the assitance through the foundation I run, so get in touch if we can help you with your girls' needs.

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  14. Candice, wow! What a beautiful letter. Great friends are such a blessing, and it seems like that is just what you have found. What a wonderful way for you to express your thanks. Love every post that you write!

    -Kristi in Iowa

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  15. That is such a beautiful touching letter Candice. I check in here regularly and look forward to your posts.

    www.kissesfromanangel.blogspot.com

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  16. What a nice letter...Very thoughtful and from the heart!

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  17. What a precious thank you to Todd & Angie. Thank you for sharing this publicly. I'm praying for you and your family and so encouraged by your story!

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  18. What a beautiful 'thank you' to an amazing couple & their precious family.
    Continued blessings to you and your family,
    Kaye
    Matthew 21:22

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  20. This is such an inspiring, beautiful letter of thanks. Thank you, for sharing your letter with all of us. It is so amazing to see how God puts things into place. How HE sees the big picture, when sometimes all we can see is just one puzzle piece. You are taking great strides Candice, growing in the Lord and gaining strength, not only in your marriage, but in your walk with God as well. How awesome, that God set into motion a healing process for your family, that included Todd, Angie and the girls. What a great story, testimony you are going to have to share with not only your girls, but with others. I have NO DOUBT that God will use you and your husband someday, when you are healed, to help others. He works like that!!! May God's blessings reign on your sweet family!!

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  21. What a beautiful, heart felt letter. I admire you so much. I read your entire story and (talk about not being able to write - that's me!)I want to cry and smile at the same time. You're amazing and I pray the bumps in the road will level out soon - I feel God will see to that. He (God) must be so proud of you and Jason. I'll keep you all in my prayers and soon I'll be reading about Jason's new job and the family in one place. God has plans for you and I cannot wait to see what they are!

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  22. You did your job with these words Candace....i am now inspired to love someone in that way you have been loved by the Smiths!! So beautiful written and straight from the bottom of your precious heart. You WILL pour out just as you have been poured into. You already are.

    Thanking God now for His work in your life. I pray He blesses both families in such a sweet, tender way.

    Hugs,
    Fran
    TN

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  23. What a sweet, beautiful letter. Thank you for showing us yet another side of Angie and Todd they would never dream of telling us themselves.


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  24. Well, It is a beautiful letter and what faithful servants Todd and Angie are. I am sure that you are as much of a blessing to Angie as she has been to you.

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