Today was home church.
We thought about setting up outside underneath the willow tree, but menacing black clouds slowly marched toward us across the Jefferson National Forest. The heat and humidity were oppressive. It felt like a sauna outside.
Church around the dining room table worked just fine.
Before church we hovered around the table, perusing an article written about our farm by Beth Macy. Rachel and Jason bought a copy of the Roanoke Times on their way to the farm. We were a bit stunned. We knew the story would be in the paper, but I assumed it would fall in the Virginia section, not the FRONT PAGE! I was so embarrassed.
Maggie was disappointed that all the pictures of Fred and Tabby's wedding didn't make the spread. Patrick was glad that one of his quotes made the story. I cried when Rachel handed me the paper and I saw Widow in the headline and she and Jason gave me a big hug and missed Philip with me. Then we laughed because we all knew how proud he must be to see our pictures in the paper, if he ever has a chance to get a sneak peek from heaven.
Then it was time to put away the paper, grab that last bit of coffee and begin our service.
We sang our hymns. We read the readings. Then we began the joyful work of tackling the scriptures.
We usually start with the Psalm and then try to find the thru-line with the other readings. Some of them were a bit confusing, but there was nothing confusing about the passage in Hebrews. We camped out in Hebrews 12, first 14 verses. It was a powerful passage, encouraging followers of God to run the race with perserverance. We had a great time dissecting the verses, grabbing the dictionary every once in awhile to help flesh out words like perserverance and righteousness. Talked about the difference between discipline, getting in trouble and discipline, training to develop strong bodies, spirits and minds.
We shared the bread and the wine then rushed out to the garden to pick a tub full of corn to take down the road for Sunday dinner. Right as we began to shuck the corn, the black clouds ran down the mountain, stirred up a breeze, and exploded over the valley. It rained and rained, but never mind! Tim just moved the grill under a roof outside and dinner happened anyway.
Have I ever mentioned that spending Sunday afternoons with friends around dinner is one of my favorite things? Thank you, Mom and Dad for teaching us the value of Sunday dinner. Slow and relaxed, late enough to cover both dinner and supper. Plenty of time for kids to play and grownups to visit. Perfect way to make certain that a big tub of corn is put to good use. A cup of coffee, probably a bit later than is good for me seemed like the perfect way to end the day. Looking at Tim and Linda's dating and early marriage years back in the late 70's and 80's was a delightful bonus. We laughed and laughed at the hair styles and the shiny shirt. Tim's, not Linda's! We wondered why all those great photos are stuffed in an album instead of framed on the wall.
The clouds moved on, the sun returned and with it a steam bath.
But, thanks be to God from whom all blessings flow, the afternoon storm almost filled our pond to the brim! WOW!
The little showers along have been greening up the pastures, but haven't done a thing for the drying up pond. Today's gully washer definitely made a difference. Yeay for end of summer thunderstorms.