Jun 30, 2013

Capital Karate Mount Pleasant

In February of 2012, my wife and I moved back to my home, South Carolina to work and prepare for the next step in ministry. While seeking the Lord's will, I served as the transitional pastor for St. Johns Baptist in Pinopolis, SC and helped them re-constitute the church and call a full-time pastor.
After much prayer we began pursuing bi-vocational ministry as a way to build the Kingdom, reach the world, and utilize the gifts and talents the Lord has given us. We recently started Capital Karate in Mount Pleasant, SC as a way to support our work from a tent-making perspective. You can find more information about the studio on our website here and below. We are very excited about this as it is a passion of mine. I have been teaching since 1996 and in that time I've seen many different programs and studios and I can confidently say this is a truly unique program that focuses on character development as well as the martial arts, it truly provides the best of both. Please pray with us that the Lord will bless this business and thus give us the freedom to serve more in His Kingdom!
Find out more about Capital Karate in Mount Pleasant, SC below or by going to the website:
Capital Karate is the place to go in Mount Pleasant SC (and the greater Charleston Area) for karate classes, and other martial arts instruction. With a lifetime of industry experience, our instructors offer top-quality martial arts education for the whole family!
Welcome to the Charleston Area’s newest Martial Arts school in Mount Pleasant, SC! Capital Karate is not just a martial arts school.  We are a leadership academy, focusing on creating leaders. Not just here at our karate academy, but at home, school, and in the community.
How are we different from other martial arts schools?
We specialize in helping families train and earn their black belts together. Whether young or old(er), your family can all train in the same class together.  We encourage moms and dads to jump in and take the same class! For the family that is already commuting to and fro, or that just wants a great family activity, this is great news!
In Mount Pleasant and the Charleston area, convenience of the commute is a must. This is why Capital Karate is conveniently and centrally located to serve Mount Pleasant and the greater Charleston area. We are an easy drive if you live in Mount Pleasant, Downtown Charleston, or North Charleston. If you live in West Ashley, most families only have to drive about 10-15 minutes to arrive at our location.
Call or text 843-813-1573 to schedule your free, introductory martial arts leadership lesson to find out why our program is so popular!
Are you a Parent?
Discover how we teach life lessons/skills in a clean, safe, professionally operated martial arts academy.  Contact us here capitalkaratemp@gmail.com or at 843-813-1573 to receive additional information.
Our program uses martial arts to give your child the tools they need to:
  • Improve Their Grades
  • Be Physically Fit
  • Be Super Confident Leaders
Our Mount Pleasant Martial Arts school is the perfect way to increase self-defense skills or simply improve discipline.  Call us today and let's set up a free lesson for your entire family!
With our unique approach and curriculum, we can help everyone become better and achieve their goals! Whether you are interested in the martial arts for yourself or looking for a place where your entire family can train in karate together, we have the right program for you!  Contact us to see for yourself!
Capital Karate of Mount Pleasant is conveniently and centrally located to serve Mount Pleasant and the greater Charleston area. Contact us to see for yourself how our Mount Pleasant location can help your whole family achieve their goals and have fun together!
Capital Karate has opened it’s newest location in Mount Pleasant, SC! Run by Chief Instructor Aaron Hawk, your family has the opportunity to train under a seasoned martial arts instructor! Mr. Hawk has been teaching martial arts for 17 years, and brings a high level of energy, fun, discipline, and respect to every class. Classes aren’t just for kids either, but designed for the entire family. Our memberships are reasonably priced— once you pay for 2 family members, everyone else trains for free!
What Does A Typical Capital Karate Class Look Like?
One of the things that makes our classes very unique is the amount of structure that we require. Students are lined up according to height, and are taught to be very precise in their movements. At the beginning of each class, we recite our student oath, which teaches and reminds us how to think about ourselves, and how to treat others. Then, Mr. Hawk will discuss the monthly Leadership Life Skill. Our academy’s goal is to train each student to become a leader, not a follower, and to always do their very best. Effective leadership skills are the most recognizable characteristic of successful and high achieving individuals. They are also the skills that parents most desire for their children to learn.
Our 9 Leadership Life Skills:
  1. Setting and Achieving Goals
  2. Showing Courtesy
  3. Developing a Positive, Black Belt Attitude
  4. Demonstrating Respect for Yourself and Others
  5. Honor
  6. Perseverance
  7. Loyalty
  8. Self-Control
  9. Integrity
Enroll at Capital Karate in Mount Pleasant, and give your children the gift of leadership, self-defense, and excellence!
What is Your Program Like?
Our classes are family-based, and very structured. We stress non-violent conflict resolution, how to avoid dangerous situations, and practical self-defense techniques for getting away from a range of situations. One of the main aspects of our training involves helping our students avoid being the victims of bullies. Our realistic training includes a mix of various martial arts including karate, krav maga, and aikido.
Leaders are always victors and never victims. Your children will be taught that their martial arts skills are for self-defense only, and they will have a clear understanding of being personally responsible for their actions and attitudes.
Unique to Mount Pleasant Capital Karate, we incorporate special programs into your child’s class plans:
  • A safe modern approach to teaching traditional martial arts values
  • Develop basic athletic skills, fundamentals and fitness
  • Character & life skills lessons for kids
Kids who learn to defend themselves usually will never have to. They learn to walk with confidence and are less apt to be a prime target for bullies and / or abductors. Kids with a high level of self-confidence are also better able to deal with negative peer pressure and can “just say no” to dangerous situations and threatening people.
How To Get Your Child Started with Martial Arts Classes in Mount Pleasant, SC:
Call (843) 813-1573 and schedule a trial program for your child. You will be given a tour of our training facility, and get to meet the instructors. This gives you the opportunity to see if our program is right for you and your family. Our tuition rates are reasonable, competitive and affordable. We look forward to meeting you and making a difference in the life of your child!
Also check out our Capital Karate in Mount Pleasant, SC Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CapitalKarateMP

Dec 6, 2012

Oh how I long to write, but the clock ticks on

Miss being able to post on here, some day I'll take it back up again, but for now I have no time. I am choosing to leave the content up here in the hopes that it may help someone even if it is older posts! GS

Oct 21, 2011

Wondrous Provision - Take 2

So, don't have a lot of time to write right now, but just want to brag on the Lord again. About a year ago the Lord allowed a car accident that totaled my 92 Civic Si. He then provided us with a 2002 Honda Odyssey through several means (including the settlement from the Civic, a no-interest loan, and the capstone of which was an incredibly generous gift from our church family). A few months ago Michelle's old 92 Corolla (yes, they were both 92's) gave up the fight with a litany of issues including the trans and brake system (for starters). The Lord has once again provided through some wonderful means. First, he allowed us to borrow a vehicle from a dear brother in Christ since then until we picked up our new car. Second, He has given us yet another no-interest loan. Third, we have once again been blessed with a few gifts toward the car. Forth, He provided just the right car through the estate of Michelle's grandfather (took tragedy and brought some good out of it). Finally, He allowed all of the paperwork and details to be worked out and we picked up one of the nicest vehicles I've ever driven! Thus, in the last year, He has just plain-old spoiled us, twice over!

I praise and magnify the Lord for His countless, rich blessings. As I think of and look around the world, Christ spoils us so, so terribly much here in America (with great blessings come great responsibility). We are so amazingly blessed even through material things that in the end, don't matter that much. If our heavenly Father delights in giving us good material gifts, that perish, how much more should we believe Him for the eternal things, the very things that He instructs us to look for?! It is a good reminder and an important spiritual lesson. Jesus, thank you for spoiling us so much, and help us to spoil others in return as that is what pleases you!!!

PS - this is after years and years of having troublesome cars or no car at all. We don't understand His timing, but we know that He is good in the good times and in the bad, which reminds me of one of my fav songs. "As Long As You Are Glorified" by Sovereign Grace Music (http://www.sovereigngracemusic.org/albums/category/sovereign_grace_music/come_weary_saints)

Aug 25, 2011

Quick Thought for the Day

When I first started martial arts, I couldn’t wait to get past the basics and get to the “good stuff.” I used to enjoy seeing people’s belt displays and couldn’t wait to get my black belt and have the “complete” belt system. I couldn’t wait to learn what I needed to finish. Since then, I’ve learned there really isn’t anything beyond the basics, you just keep coming back to the same things, the same basics, making them better, and building on them. You put solid basics together and you have growth, but it isn’t anything new, it’s just the basics. At some point along the way I began noticing that many of the people who have a personal belt display don’t have their black belt on it. The reason I found out is that black belt is really just the beginning. Black belt really means that you have learned the basics sufficiently to truly begin the journey of learning the martial arts. It is not the end, the capstone, but rather, the beginning of understanding martial arts. You have never “mastered” or “completed” your training if you are a true martial artist. Thus, you can’t have completed black belt and thus, it is not displayed. The belts on the display represent what it took to learn the basics, to get to the point where you can truly begin learning. Thus, the absence of the black belt is a testimony and reminder that you are still on the journey and that you will never “complete” your training.

So it is in the Spiritual life. So often Christians (especially younger Christians) seek after the fantastic, the amazing, the exciting things. They want to know all the “secret” things, the things that no one else knows. They want to know what the Bible “really” says. And, so often, they chase after these things for the things themselves, believing that these are the mark of maturity and having “arrived.” For example, they go to sections that speak of the end times / apocalypse, or read something like the Da Vinci Code that claims to give “hidden meaning” and so on. Or they think, I need to read the whole Bible and then I’ll have mastered it or know all I need to or I need to read or pray like so and so and then I’ll have arrived. Then, they start walking in the Christian life pursuing those things (totally missing the mark, btw) and they get frustrated because they haven’t “arrived” yet. What they (we) often miss, is that just like in the example of the belt system above, we are on a journey where we are seeking to become more like Christ. The things that we do are the basics, such as praying, reading, trusting the Lord, delighting in Him above all else and putting Him first, etc. These are the basic things that we need to learn. So often we speak, talk, or live as if we need to get past these things to be “mature.” Yet, as in the example above, these are the things that we are constantly having to “re-learn” and that we keep coming back to time and time again. The thing is, that truly is the journey and those are the basics, that’s where growth is. It’s not in anything secret or fancy, just in the basics and building from there. As long as we’re on this earth, we will never “arrive” in that sense. The very notion of “arriving” is as nonsensical as thinking that earning a black belt means you have “finished” in the martial arts.

Nov 19, 2010

Wondrous Provision

I can’t take a lot of time to write right now… too much going on. But, I do want to give the Lord the praise He is due for providing us with a “new” vehicle. In a recent post I referred to the accident and asked many of you to be in prayer for us, that the Lord would provide for us. I referenced the fact that we would not be able to purchase anything without the Lord’s provision and that we were simply waiting in faith for the Lord to move. Too often in life, we ask for things (with more or less pure motives), but how often do we really stop and thank the Lord? How appropriate in this season, the week before Thanksgiving?! I believe in asking the Lord very honestly for what we need (and He already knows), but I also believe in praising and thanking Him!

That is precisely the purpose in this note. I want to not only thank Him for providing us with another vehicle, but for showing off and providing something MUCH greater than we imagined. We were able to find a 2002 Honda Odyssey EX with 113,000 on it. The Lord has provided in several ways beyond just showing us the van. We got a lot more back on my car than I thought we would (the beauty of it having been an Si). Two of our friends gave us a generous gift and then we were able to get a loan for the amount we were still lacking.

It’s pretty dirty b/c an old man who apparently loved to go everywhere with his dog owned it, but that is just a little cleaning job. It seems to be in pretty good shape mechanically and very good shape otherwise. It also just had a major tune-up done, so it really shouldn’t need much maintenance initially. There is a sound in the engine that is not “normal” but the mechanic said it isn’t anything to be concerned about. He will be giving it a thorough exam this coming week and hopefully taking care of anything that does need to be handled.

I do still have one prayer request though… well, two. First, as I said above, we did end up having to get a loan for a few thousand. So, I would ask you to continue in your prayers for financial provision, we really need it right now. Second, that the vehicle would last a LONG time! Below are some pictures:

Nov 4, 2010

A Poem: Make Me Worthy of Your Calling

It's been a while since I've written anything creative and even longer since I've written a poem. I don't claim this one is great, but it is straight from the heart. It is similar to another post I wrote some time ago (http://a-hawk.blogspot.com/2009_05_01_archive.html), though there are some differences as well... funny how we go in cycles sometimes. This is why scripture reminds us to remember!

Make me worthy of your calling oh Lord; make my paths straight and my heart true!
For I know myself well, the poison within; yet like water I drink, not noting the end.

Search my whole heart, and know me my Lord; reveal to me, what you have abhorred.
That I might break and you might build, Christ in me, wholly filled.

Guide all my steps into that place, where I depend upon your grace.
Let me not wander or go off course, but let me remain in you my source.

Keep me dear Lord within your will, a servant true and faithful still.
That in the end it might be known, that honor to you I have shown!

Just in case you can't follow my cadence, I'll post the poem again with the numbered cadence... sometimes I make sense to myself, but not to others ;)

Make me worthy of your calling oh Lord (10), make my paths straight and my heart true! (8)
For I know myself well (6), the poison within (5); yet like water I drink (6), not noting the end (5).

Search my whole heart (4) and know me my Lord (5), reveal to me (4) what you have abhorred (5)
That I might break (4) and you might build (4), Christ in me (3), wholly filled (3)

Guide all my steps into that place (8), where I depend upon your grace (8)
Let me not wander or go off course (9), but let me remain in you my source (9)

Keep me dear Lord within your will (8), a servant true and faithful still (8)
That in the end it might be known (8), that honor to you I have shown (8)

Oct 31, 2010

An Interesting Day – An Electrical Job, A Totaled Car, A Few Errands, and a Faithful God

So, as is often the case when “major” events happen in my life, I am taking the opportunity to reflect on the situation and to write about it. Today was a great day, I really enjoyed the day and love being in the will of God and seeing Him work… even when I don’t understand it.

I started the day slowly as I’ve been sick lately and am on day 7 of antibiotics. I’m feeling a lot better than I have, but not 100%. So, I was scheduled to go to one of our pastor’s house to help with doing electrical in his basement. I started later than intended, but still got over there early-ish in the morning. On my way there, I visited a friend at work that was helping me with something and then headed to the pastor’s house. After spending the day there, I was finally finished and headed home. I planned on going home, working on a project, then meeting another friend to help with a vehicle logistics problem (driving a car :), and then he was to help me bring our harp back from the church. So, I headed home driving down Bardstown road away from the pastor’s house (I’m guessing somewhere around 5 pm). This road is a 5-lane road, with a turn lane in the middle, meaning the North bound side I was on is two lanes of North bound traffic. I went through a light and on the other side, there was the usual blockade of people in the right lane essentially at a standstill. The left lane however was clear for about a ¼ mile, as it usually is around this area (at that time of day). I slowed down because the left lane was only clear for a little bit and the right was stopped. As I drove past the first section of the blockade, I went “on guard” as I normally do, waiting for someone to try to shoot / shift lanes from the right lane into the left. The next thing I know, I’m seeing slow-motion. I hear the bang of metal crunching against metal just a split-second before I can actually see the car that just pulled out in front of me, followed by the jerk of my car stopping “on a dime” (well, on / at a Ford Focus to be specific), and THEN the airbag hits me in the chin. I wanted to punch the thing (unfortunately, it was already flat :). I’m assuming it was compensating for the low-speed impact, but it actually hit me a split-second AFTER the collision, right about the time I was starting to “self-right” in my seat. I actually had a split second to think to myself, “hey, my airbag didn’t go…” BANG!

So, what happened? Well, I was passing a Waffle House (on my right) and there was a teenage girl that apparently wanted to make a left (from the Waffle House lot toward the South) A waffle house employee told her she should have used the other exit, the one with the light!. Apparently she had wedged between two cars that were stopped in the right lane and decided to “gun it” toward the “safety” of the turn lane. I guess she thought it was clear, but she was quite wrong. I’m sure she wasn’t able to see me, but that’s just why you NEVER try that maneuver, especially in such heavy traffic. Even if she had made it past me / my lane, the turn lane in that spot is NOT safe, and the cars in the South bound lanes were stacked up like sardines anyway. It’s no surprise that I later found out the girl has only been driving since either July or January (the mom was a little flustered and settled on January). Immediately after the accident, I checked myself to see if I was still intact (though I was fairly sure I was since I was thinking about decking the airbag -which, for those of you that don’t know my sense of humor, that simply means I’m annoyed with something, not that I actually want or intend to deck something… although, it hit me first, and there I go again ;). After that, I looked up to see where the impact was on the other car (and thus, what to expect in terms of injury to the driver), just in time to see a teenage girl having a nervous break-down. She looked extremely young and was just freaking out. I motioned to see if she was ok and she nodded (and the same for the friend that was with her). Thankfully, my car struck right around the driver’s front tire / wheel and not the door. I took another second to just take stock of everything and then looked for my cell phone. When I found it, I began to motion to see if she had already called the police… she hadn’t… she was on the phone with mom and dad. So, I called and was informed that someone had reported it and the police would be there as soon as possible. I was quite impressed at the large number of people that stopped to be witnesses and to be great citizens and see if we were OK… a grand total of ZERO! Thank you Kentucky drivers! Ok, rant over. Anyway, there were a few people that tried to help who were going the other way (Southbound). They asked if we were ok and one of them tried to tell me the nearest intersection so I could tell whoever I was on the phone with (I lost track as I felt like I was a dispatcher with all the people calling me, and that I had to call).

To make a long story short, I spent the next hour or so reassuring a very scared girl that the world would not end and that everyone makes mistakes and so on. I also had to verbally coerce the girls away from the cars (which were still in the middle of the road) and into the grass so that we were out of the road and not killed by someone that wasn’t paying attention. I think they were so flustered and scared they just couldn’t process what I was saying for a minute. When her parents came I introduced myself to them and the mother was very kind, even offering to let me sit in their car where it was warm (I was still in my work shorts and t-shirt). We made small talk for a minute and then the police showed up (Fire rescue showed up earlier to make sure we were all ok and to clean up the mess from my bleeding car).

The damage: My Civic, totaled. Ford Focus, might be able to be repaired. The girl’s left front axle was broken for sure, but there was little visible body damage. I’m not sure what might have been damaged in the engine compartment. Beyond that, their car was A-OK. Mine on the other hand, is worth nearly nothing according to the Blue-book (despite being a collector’s car… Black 92 Civic Si, for those that know). The airbag alone I think costs more than the car, but beside that, the entire front end is crumpled up against the fire-wall with all of the cooling and AC system mangled beyond repair (and likely many other things). The dern thing still ran and drove though… well, at least to the parking lot of the Waffle House about 20 feet away. Damage to me: Small cut / scrape on right knee, small cut on left knee (left will probably bruise a little), sore collar bone (seatbelt) and peck muscle, a slight burn on the neck from the seatbelt, and a scrape or burn on my right wrist from (I don’t know?, poss airbag vent). Damage to the girls: nothing they were aware of at the time (except emotional :). After everything was taken care of (paperwork, cars towed, etc), Ben Farrar picked me up and I was able to help as planned by driving one of their vehicles to their house. After that, we went and picked up the harp and brought it home. Thanks Ben, for picking me up and for getting the harp.

So, now to take stock. Girls = totaled cars. OK, OK, I’m joking! On a serious note, I’m just so thankful that no one was hurt. I’m SO thankful that my car struck the front wheel and not the driver’s door and not the rear end (hurt the girls or spin the car). I’m also SO thankful that her car was in front of mine because it probably would have shoved me into any on-coming cars that were still moving (head-on) and / or into another vehicle on the side. I’m thankful that I was going slower than the speed limit as it would have been much worse. I’m thankful that if it had to happen, it happened to me. Why, because I’m not a jerk and the girl made an honest mistake and I’m afraid of what some would have done / how they would have treated her. I do hope that she learns from this, don’t get me wrong. She needs to learn from it. However, someone acting like a jerk or trying to sue or whatever is not going to teach her anything. I hope that she learns from it and then is able to let it go. Finally, it gave me an opportunity to show Christ’s love and to demonstrate a faithful heart and mind. What I mean is that you can always tell who a person really is when trouble comes or bad things happen. Because of Christ’s love and grace in my life, I was able to demonstrate how a Christian ought to act in a situation like this and I was able to do it in sincerity.

Finally, I have been and will be able to demonstrate faith in Christ in and through this situation. What do I mean? Well, there are two sides to this story. The first, the human side, is that I won’t be able to buy a decent vehicle with whatever the insurance company gives me. It will be a start, but it won’t be enough for a vehicle that ran like that one… it was a gem. This is compounded with the move, much less commuting opposite directions once there. The bottom line is that there is no way humanly speaking. You may ask why I’m happy about this or why I consider the day to be good in light of this? Well, I’m not saying I like being in this position, I don’t like not being able to provide or not being able to go out and get a vehicle. So why do I consider it a good day? Precisely because of the second side of the story! The thing is, it is in these situations, no matter how mundane it may be (or how huge it might seem), we get to see Christ work!!! We get to watch Him moving and working and providing in any number of ways! Sometimes He just drops something in our laps and sometimes He uses our current or natural circumstances. Other times He gives His people a desire to help, each as they are able and when combined they are able to accomplish much more (Ex 36:6). Still other times, it is in some way that we hadn’t even considered!

If we will stop long enough, if we will take a breath and observe, if we will listen for a second, we will hear the heartbeat and see the hands of our Savior!!!!!!! He is not merely concerned with our soul (though that is certainly enough), no, He is also VERY concerned about our lives. Our Heavenly Father knows what we need and takes great delight in providing for us (Matt 6:25-34; Luke 12:22-31). He also delights in helping us grow in faith and learn that we can trust in Him for things both big and small. I don’t know about you, but I get excited when God begins to work! I get excited knowing that He is doing all things for our good and that His plans are always good and perfect and always infinitely better than we could ever ask or imagine!!! THIS is how I can say it was a good day. I will do all that I can, don’t get me wrong. But, when I’ve done everything that is in my power (and that I ought to do), I will have the honor and pleasure of resting in Him and watching my savior work this out for His glory and my betterment! I don’t know how and I don’t know when, but I know that He will provide. He may take us through a period of trial, we may struggle with this for a little while, but if so, I know that we will Glorify Him in the way we act, talk, and think. He may choose to pour out blessings upon us immediately and provide exactly what we need right away. I have to be honest as a human and say that I hope it is the latter, but I’m genuinely ok with the first. God has provided so MANY good things and I don’t deserve ANY of them. So, in the perspective, what is this by comparison?! It is as nothing!

Now, having discussed the ethereal, I want to go back to the earthly for a moment. I simply want to ask you to join me in prayer. Please pray that the Lord will be glorified in all of this. Please pray for the girl and her family. I pray that if they don’t know Christ, they will come to know Him. I also pray that she will learn from this; that she will only feel sorrow long enough to learn from this and I hope it points her to Christ. We are taught many things about prayer and one of those is that we are taught to ask for what we need and desire and that the Lord will provide according to His will. I am therefore praying that the Lord would provide enough for a solid vehicle that will last and serve us well as we seek to serve Christ! Finally, I am praying that when we are able, the Lord will provide just the right vehicle (perhaps even a mini-van… for the harp and tools)!