Calling All Hinsons

"…that they should seek God…" Acts 17:26-27


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Changes

I’m just gonna be vulnerable here. I don’t do transition well.

I actually don’t do self-evaluation well, so I couldn’t tell you exactly how I feel, but I know by the condition of my fingernails that I am stressed out.

Tomorrow starts a completely new and foreign journey for our family. Tomorrow is the day I begin work as a Nurse Practitioner full-time.

For the past few weeks life has been full of changes. We packed up our home in Lancaster, moved all the stuff to Rock Hill, unpacked, and tried to settle in. We have spent countless hours assembling furniture and taking things back to stores that don’t work or don’t fit–the third baby gate was the charm. We have visited churches where we didn’t know anyone and sat in congregations where no one knew us.

And in the midst of all this change I haven’t really been able to think on what our “new life” will look like. We have ministered as a family for over three years. Sure we would be apart–with meetings and other obligations–but for the most part we were together.

Tomorrow I will go into work and come home in the afternoons. Grant will be home with the kids and will plug into ministry opportunities as they come along. It will be completely different for us.

But one thing is for certain–we know this is what God has called us to.

So as tomorrow comes, will you pray for us? I am anxious to learn and develop in this new role but am uncertain what that looks like exactly for our family of five. I am thankful that God is using us in this way and am excited to see where this season leads.

Thanks for the love and prayers,


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If these trailer walls could talk


I sit on a stack of flattened boxes. They aren’t needed–all the packing is done.

The trucks and trailer just pulled out of the sandy yard on Athena Road with all our material possessions. 

And I sit. 

I’m waiting on Adah to wake up so I can head to Rock Hill, too, but I’m secretly thankful for this time. It’s quiet and empty in here and I can finally let all the emotions flood in and the tears flood out.

I didn’t realize there would be so many tears, but now that they started, they don’t seem to be stopping anytime soon.

So I sit and think and cry and reflect. Thinking about all that these walls have seen while The Hinson Family has occupied this trailer.

I’m thinking that if these walls could talk, they would tell of the fear and worry I had when we first moved in that caused me to sleep in the living room for the first week–with one eye open.

If these walls could talk, they would tell of last night how I slept comfortably and soundly in my bed because I have learned what it feels like to rest in the peace Jesus gives.


If these walls could talk, they would tell of the first conversations with Carmen and the struggles we had just trying to communicate simple phrases with each other.

If these walls could talk, they would tell of the times this week that we sat with Carmen and laughed and hugged and chatted about how much we will miss each other.


If these walls could talk, they would tell of the scary times that brought us to our knees and the hard times when we wondered what in the world God was doing with us here.

If these walls could talk, they would tell of those same times when He picked us up from our brokenness and wiped our tears, bandaged our wounds, and told us to keep running the race.


If these walls could talk, they would tell of long, difficult conversations with neighbors about strongholds and addictions and battles with Satan.

If these walls could talk, they would tell of those conversations that resulted in broken chains and freedom in Christ and lives given to a sovereign God.


If these walls could talk, they would tell of the tears we cried for our neighbor’s sins that so easily entangled and the cycles that some seem to be so blindly wrapped up in.

If these walls could talk, they would tell of the tears we cried for the ones who grabbed hold of God and followed Him, despite the unknowns and the hardships still in their way. 


If these walls could talk, they would tell of the joy and love we shared around the table with neighbors and church friends and how God knitted our hearts with so many friends we treasure.

If these walls could talk, they would tell how this family is going to miss this trailer.


We will miss the knocks at the door at midnight and 3am. 

We will miss the trips to the store and struggling through language barriers over a cup of coffee.

We will miss the hours of homework helpers and the million hot dogs at every event and the sandy kiddos begging for snacks and drinks.

We are so indescribably thankful to God for this journey He took us on here in Countryside. We have learned what it really means to trust Him, what it really means to lean on Him, and what it really means to serve Him. 

While we will miss our neighbors dearly, this is not a final good-bye, but a see ya later. We can’t stay away too long–we might need a hot dog and a Spanish lesson.

Thankful and tearful,



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Great BIG exciting {but sad} NEWS!

Living in Countryside for three years now, we have seen God work in miraculous ways. Thirty-three souls have accepted the Lord as their Savior with seven following in baptism. Many have heard the Gospel at the monthly events—with up to 400 people attending some events. Impactful ministries are going on weekly that include Homework Helpers, English as a Second Language, and Bible Studies. Countless others have reached out for private counseling and prayer for various life struggles. We can’t believe we have been given the privilege of ministering in Countryside for this season.

As many of you know, Amber has been in school to obtain her Family Nurse Practitioner degree since we began this journey in Countryside. We have always felt that The Lord would allow us to incorporate medical care into our ministry, maybe through free clinics or mobile clinics. Now that her school journey has come to an end, and she graduated and passed her certification exam, everything seems to be falling into place to move us to the next step in our journey.

Last year we felt led to ask the Smith family to join us as teammates and ministry partners with The Connection. They have lived here and we have walked with them for over nine months now and they have brought a lot of strengths to the ministry team. Shanda Mackey has also moved in as a teammate and ministry partner since January. She has been a great asset as well with her passion for seeing our Hispanic neighbors come to know the Lord.

Before any type of healthcare ministry is formed, Amber needs a base of experience as a Nurse Practitioner. She must be trained in the field and learn valuable skills and knowledge in order to one day apply those things to ministry. That is why she has accepted a job at Affinity Health Center in Rock Hill, South Carolina. As a former HIV/AIDS clinic, but now open for primary care, Affinity’s mission is to provide healthcare access to the underserved and underprivileged in Rock Hill. We are excited that the Lord would open this door to full-time work in a setting where Amber will still be able to minister to those we feel called to—the underserved and underprivileged.

With this new position comes a change in ministry. Our model of ministry has always been to serve together as a family unit. With one of those pieces missing every day of the week, it will be extremely difficult to carry on with work in Countryside as we have. We feel that The Lord is giving us this next season to prepare us for the future. We will be moving to Rock Hill to be closer to Affinity. Amber starts her new position on August 1st.

 

The Connection will still be a very active ministry and will not change in any of its mission, activities, philosophy, or ministry style. The Smiths and Shanda will run the ministry as a team and will continue with many of the same outreach activities—and are planning to add their own touches to enhance what is already established. We will be available as a resource and support to the team.

We sincerely thank you for your obedience to Christ as you have given over these years to ensure that The Connection remained a thriving ministry. We also thank you for all the prayers you prayed for our family through the years. These three years we have seen how God has been working so obviously in this community and we see the atmosphere of the neighborhood improving one life at a time, one family at a time, one trailer at a time. Our goal while living here has focused on Acts 17:26-27–to help them seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward Him and find Him, because He is actually not far from any of us. We feel that God has allowed us to carry out that calling to the fullest extent here in Countryside, given us the chance to raise up disciples to continue the work, and now is the time to move onto our next endeavor that He has for our family. The Bible is full of similar examples where ministries are started, disciples are trained, and leaders move onto the next thing God lays out. We are thankful to be used by Him in this way.

There is much, much more to the story—it’s just too much to share right here, right now. We would love to sit down and talk to you about more details and share the amazing ways He lined up all the parts we needed at just the right time. Feel free to call us with any questions! And as always, we ask that you pray for us as we begin our journey to our next destination! 

Serving Him,

Grant, Amber, Asher, Evan Grace, & Adah Hinson


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Sedona Splendor: Thursday & Friday

Thursday was spent mostly souvenir shopping in Uptown Sedona. One thing we loved about the town was that it was not commercialized at all. The closest Walmart is about 25 minutes away and all the stores are local, selling mainly hand-made crafts. Another thing we liked was the fact that all the buildings have to follow a strict color-scheme and height requirement, as to not take away from the majestic view of the Red Rocks in the background.

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After finding the perfect gifts for our little people, we traveled out to Red Rock State Park and took in the view there. Everywhere we go, it is simply amazing.

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Friday we woke up at 4am and headed to Phoenix to end our amazing trip. I can’t believe how blessed we are to have been able to experience this. God is so very good and His creation is a reflection of His majesty.

And even though we saw some pretty amazing views this week, this view is more incredible than any other.

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I am thankful beyond words!

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Sedona Splendor: Wednesday

Wow! What a day!

The glory of God was evident as we traveled through the Coconino National Forest on our way north to the Grand Canyon. The whole two-hour trip we played praise music and tears filled my eyes to sing to an amazingly awesome God who loves us so much.

Oh, it’s love so undeniable
I, I can hardly speak
Peace so unexplainable
I, I can hardly think

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And of course, the Grand Canyon speaks for itself. The first look is breathtaking and points directly to the Creator of the Universe.
As you call me deeper still
Into love, love, love
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We spent a good part of the day hiking down into the Grand Canyon to Ooh-Aah Point. I have to say it is aptly named.
You’re a Good, Good Father
It’s who you are, it’s who you are, it’s who you are
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After our hike we traveled to Desert View Watch Tower to take a look at the Grand Canyon from the tower built to mimic indian storehouses. The view from the top, complete with a verse from Psalms hanging on the wall, was completely amazing.
And I’m loved by you
It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am
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Finally, we ended our night watching the sunset over The Canyon at Grandview Point. I am thankful, blessed, and in awe.
You are perfect in all of your ways
You are perfect in all of your ways
You are perfect in all of your ways to us
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Amen and amen,
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Sedona Splendor: Tuesday

Today was a beautiful day of hiking. We headed out to Oak Creek Canyon and ventured on a trail that we named Hinson Trail because we think we made it up. After Oak Creek, we traveled out to Fay Canyon and experienced the most beautiful view we have seen since being here. I’m just gonna let the pictures speak for themselves today.

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Fay Canyon

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Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
    let the sea resound, and all that is in it.
Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them;
    let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.

Psalm 96:11-12

Blessed,

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Sedona Splendor: Monday

DSC_0554We have heard a lot about the Coffee Pot Restaurant so we thought we would go there for brunch. It was named for the coffee pot formation (red rock) behind it. It is also famous for it’s menu of 101 omelettes. Can you say YUM?

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After brunch we headed out to the Chapel of the Holy Cross. The reverence there was undeniable. It was a holy place and everyone seemed to recognize it. The chapel was inspired by local rancher and sculptor Marguerite B. Staude, who was inspired in 1932 by the newly constructed Empire State Building. Her plan originally was to build the structure in Budapest, Hungary, but WWII set that plan off course and she settled on building it in her homeland. It was completed in 1956 and in Marguerite’s words, “Though Catholic in faith, as a work of art the Chapel has a universal appeal. Its doors will ever be open to one and all, regardless of creed, that God may come to life in the souls of all men (and women) and be a living reality.”

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And of course, we had to throw in some much-needed FaceTime with some super cute kiddos.

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We watched another beautiful sunset from Airport Mesa (the best place to view the sunset in Sedona).

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DSC_0497All day I have been reflecting on how awesome of a Creator we serve. I am blessed to be called His child.

Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills sing for joy together. Psalm 98:8

Happy 4th!

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