I had a good weekend, hope you did too.
On Friday night we went to a singing in a neighboring county at the Morrison congregation (Do you ever attend any local singings?). According to the count there were 340 people there to join in on the teaching and admonishment via the song route. It had been a few years since I had gone to a singing and I thoroughly enjoyed it; even the new songs that were a bit tricky for this lay note reader. There was one brother there who was physically blind – but that didn’t keep him from leading a song entitled “Be Still My Soul” from his braille song book…there’s a thought for you. I had sung that song once before. It has an interesting sound.
On Saturday we went up to the Short Mountain Bible Camp to clean up the cabin that we sponsor. You can find it up on the mountain that’s between Smithville and Woodbury (for those of you who may have even the slightest familiarity with the geography around here). It amazes me how many ladybugs can find their way into a building every year! Thankfully we had a shop-vac. This is the third year that the congregation has been the cabin’s sponsor. All that basically means is that we’re responsible for the up keep – which has included adding lights to the closets, hanging new blinds and ruffly curtains (it’s a girls cabin), building new bunk-beds, adding a built-in bench to the porch, painting the ceiling and closets and recycled furniture, staying after wood gnawing bumblebees, and little bit of roof work (plus a few other little odds and ins). We still have a few things that can be done but thanks to the hard work of several brothers and sisters our little cabin is still sitting pretty and ready to be used for another camping season.
Today I’m aiming to start the week the way I ended the last one. I’m going to be preaching from John 9:8-28 about skeptics, deniers and plain old unbelievers…they’re nothing new, so stand strong in the Light of the world that’s opened your eyes! After we get home and I finish our/my regular Sunday afternoon routine I’m going to try to write-up a concise little story about the Spanish congregation that’s been started here in DeKalb county for Brotherhood News. New work is work and working is what the church ought to be doing one way or the other, right?
We just finished 2 weeks in a row, coming home only to do laundry & for me to preach, & I have to say that the more I go to Bible camp, the more I truly believe it is one of those things in life that is an earthly taste of heaven (minus the extreme drowsiness and just general fatigue). There’s worship & fellowship all day, & we are so far removed from the ungodliness of the world…that’s just a starting point, but it seems to me that heaven will in many ways resemble Bible camp. Anybody agree…disagree? As I head to bed & Randal heads for parts unknown (to me, at least), perhaps this can serve as a sort of “nudge” today. Fire away…if you’ve ever been to Bible camp, just the memories will no doubt have you starting the day off right.
All the teens are still talking about the camp. Facebook has been a wonderful thing. The Purcellville and Arab kids are all linked together, sharing photos and stories and keeping up with the lives of their new found friends. For our kids, this fellowship is really critical. We are on an island up here, and the kids don’t have other Christian friends from close by congregations around. I continue to see how this experience has affected the lives of not just my sons, but our entire teen group.
One of the things we did was to record the singing at our Bible camp as I wanted to have some singing on the web site, but let me tell you, it has paid off in spades. Links to the singing are spreading between these kids on Facebook. The kids are living the experience again and loving it.
The recording was rather last minute and could have been executed better, but it’s not bad considering. For those interested, I’ve posted selections along with photos here: http://www.purcellvillecoc.org/pcyc/2010/
One lesson I’ve learned is to never underestimate the power of the little things.
At PCYC, we had been talking all week about running the Christian race. In the teen girls class I was teaching, we were talking about how bad attitudes can hinder us in that race. We tied each of the attitudes to a lack of repentance. Yesterday morning, we closed by talking about the great judgment day, when the books will be opened and every man judged according to his works — how there is a record of our lives and that record will be compared to God’s word, which endures forever. Last evening, at the close of PCYC, two young ladies came forward because as they said, they wanted confidence on the day of judgment.
In total, we had 5 responses. One an adult, who is of a Catholic background and has asked for a Bible study. We additionally have two tentative Bible studies set up with families from the community. One teenage girl is begging to come back on Wed nights to be a part of our teenage girls class. I am so blessed to have been a part of this camp.
I will be following up with an article for Brotherhood News.
Been completely immersed in PCYC this week. We had 67 kids today, 10 of which were visitors from the local area. Only 3 of those kids had any prior contact with any member of our congregation. The father of two thanked us for going door to door when he picked them up today — said they would have never known about it if we hadn’t done so. More to come…