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  • Writer's pictureGrace Episcopal Church

Member Spotlight!: Michael Ashley

1-What is your ‘go to’ bible verse to get you through the day?

"He who heeds the word wisely will find good, and whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he."

~ Proverbs 16:20

I have lived, am living and will continue to live a blessed life. I genuinely believe it is a choice that one can make mentally and choose to live out daily. Proverbs 16:20 contains the key for being blessed with happiness in one’s life in good or bad times. Living life is not perfect. Having never ending good does not come with a money back guarantee. I choose to not let the unhappy situations that arise dictate what comes next. When facing a bad time, with Christ in mind, it can be a life changing event for the better, hence finding the good from the bad situation. As a person that likes “control” it is not an easy thing to trust in someone else’s ability to produce the outcome that I think is best. Time after time God has proven me wrong and has strengthened my sense of security in the fact that HE is in control and I am along for the ride. I encourage you too to choose to be blessed in the ride.

2-Briefly tell us about a recent fun activity* you and or your family participated in and why.

I have loved road trips ever since my younger days. Back in the day my brothers and I used a road map to plot the course for our end destination. When the family made it to that destination, we would find a Days Inn, the family hotel of choice back then. My kids would scuff at that selection. As an adult and father, I have continued this tradition by choosing a destination with the VRBO phone app to rent a home for our getaway. Our latest fun getaway was to the Anna Maria Island area, where the kids and I spent a morning on a guided Segway tour. Getting used to the Segway was a little nerve racking, yet we got the hang of it, even making our way over a bridge…yikes! Please do not tell Tonya I had her babies on a bridge riding a Segway…shh! The family beach hopped up and around the coast of the island for a few days heading back to our rented house to end the day with takeout food and more time together gaming or watching movies. I pray these new road trip memories also become ones our kids will come to cherish as they get older.

3-Do you have a favorite recipe or take-out meal recommendation you would like to share?

My favorite place is Taco Madre and I recommend the King Burrito. They have other great selections, and I could eat there several days in a row. If I am keeping the family in mind, then the restaurant selection moves to Mojo’s as everyone in the family can find a favorite. “THE PÉPIN" is my dish of choice which includes Cuban roast pork, rice and beans and plantains. Looking at our bank statement you would be able to tell that the Ashley family LOVES to eat out.

4- Beginning Monday April 12, Father Frans, on behalf of Grace Church, will be hosting weekly Alpha classes. You may invite friends, colleagues, or family members who have questions about God. What would you say to invite/ encourage guests to these free exploratory online sessions?

I have been around people of faith all my life. Honestly, it is only in passing that I “know” someone that is not a Christian, yet I would encourage a person to participate and to not be embarrassed about having questions. If one had all the answers, you would be certain of all things and would not need faith. God wants us to seek Him out, and share the truth with you.

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