Meet Lauren Shaffer in her own words…

“My name is Lauren Elise Shaffer and I was born in Illinois but didn’t stay there long.  My dad is retired Air Force and we moved every two years.  I really hated moving, having to uproot and leave friends and  the familiarity of a house, town, and area.  However, I believe moving so frequently really helped me to learn to become more adaptable.  I also had countless opportunities to be able to meet many wonderful people and to see many amazing places.  The places I’ve lived are Illinois, Ohio, Utah, Virginia, Tennessee, North Dakota, Germany…and finally back to home sweet home in North Dakota.

My family really loved the cultural experiences of living in Europe.  We remember arriving in Germany thinking we had just walked into a storybook, with its cobblestone streets and medieval buildings.  We loved the people, the bakeries, the foreign language, and the historic attributes.  We definitely have a lot of fond memories from being there, but learned that the lack of a strong church is a hindrance to Christian growth.  We are all so thankful for the sound, Bibilical preaching at New Testament Baptist Church.  I love my church and am thankful for the privilege to serve the Lord through music, and whatever other area He would have me to serve.   

             I’ve been enough places to know that each has its pros and cons, but even with its harsh winters I LOVE  North Dakota!  Maybe it’s because it’s where I got saved, or where I met my husband, or where my son was born, or where I’ve truly been the happiest in life being in the center of the Lord’s will with those I love most in all the world?!  Or maybe it also has to do with the lack of traffic, lack of crime, congestion, the quaintness, unpretentious air, the feeling of being “away from it all”….in any case, I am quite content in this little known state of North Dakota. 

I have wonderful parents and four terrific siblings (two  sisters and two brothers ) for whom I’m so thankful, and love dearly.  We have some great memories from our growing up days – some crazy, some funny, some just really good.  I choose to remember the positive.  One such memory involved wanting to try the art of dog sledding  We hooked our non-husky dog up either to the wagon or small “Flintstone car,” all piled on, and had the dog pull us on our “sled.  It worked amazingly well.

            Our military lifestyle helped me to overcome my shyness since there was no way I could survive being that way.  I quickly learned that I had to push myself out of my shell in order to make friends quickly.  As I became more outgoing, I met more people and nurtured a love for people.  I’m now definitely a “people person”.  

At one time I was quite the equestrian, and one of my horses happened to be the son of “Secretariat” the famous race horse!  I used to ride and show horses and that was a huge part of my growing up years.  I loved my horses and learned many valuable character lessons through working with them, including responsibility, determination, discipline, and confidence.  Back then I would much prefer to ride horses, but my wise parents insisted that I take, and practice, piano lessons, as a requirement to get to continue taking riding lessons.   I’m so glad that my parents made me play the piano, as that’s something I use often now in serving the Lord. 

I really love the life God has given me!  I am crazy about my husband of six years, and adore our sweet son Landon Justus.  I’m a romantic at heart and think about our wedding day often.  I can still remember the excitement and anticipation of becoming Mrs. Sean Shaffer.  Walking down the aisle to marry the most wonderful man in the world was something I’ll never forget.  It was one of the BEST days of my life!  The years to follow have been simply amazing and I thank God for that!  I respect my husband more than any man in the world and can’t thank God enough for giving us to each other.  We complement  each other perfectly :  we are both firstborns, think alike, have similar tastes, interests, philosophy of life, and goals.  We differ in the areas of personality – I’m a bit more outgoing; he keeps me grounded. I can be a bit more abstract; he is the logical one.  We have so much fun together and find that the longer we’re married the better it gets, and we didn’t even know that could be possible!  Our marriage is a testament to the fact that when you let go and let God be your matchmaker, it will be a match made in heaven.  “The blessing of the Lord it maketh rich and he addeth no sorrow with it”.  Also, I couldn’t have asked for better in-laws who are like second parents to me and I love them dearly.

Among my many interests are photography, music, jewelry designing, reading, cooking, interior decorating/design,  horseback riding, gardening, repurposing old furniture, thrifting/bargain hunting and entertaining.  I always have a project, or an idea for one, going in my head.  I’m especially passionate about photography and strive to capture emotion in every image I take.  I’m thankful  that the Lord has allowed me to do these two very special “hobbies” turned businesses,  and am thankful for a husband who supports me every step of the way.    

The Lord has blessed me FAR more than I deserve and I am humbled everyday by His goodness toward me!  I’ve learned the importance of Godly counsel and taking heed to the Word of God.  Before I was saved I had a lot of self will, but thankfully with the Lord’s help He has helped me learn to submit my will to His, teaching me that HIS way is truly the BEST way!  It has only been when I’ve submitted my will to His that He has blessed me far more than I could even ask or think.   Going against God and His Word only brings heartache and regret.  I’ve had a little of both in my life, but I’m thankful for where the Lord has brought me through it all.

My Mom often quoted Bible verses to me during my growing up years.  Some of my favorites  written below sum up what I think the Christian life ought to be.     My desire is to live my life for the Lord; it’s my reasonable service.
Romans 12:1-2  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
Thank you, Lauren for allowing us to get to know about yourself.  Your enthusiasm and zeal for God and the life He gave you, are refreshing and contagious.  We are so glad you are in our church family!