Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Shocking News!

Dean and Mindy Don't Go to a New Church Two Weeks in a Row
Let's talk about next week first. We're going to Healdsburg Community Church, which we wrote about already. I'll be preaching. They'll take anyone the Sunday after Christmas. So next week we'll post the Sunday sermon in this space.

This week....we planned to go to church. We were hoping for Christmas carols, pretty decorations, and the story that began in the manger. But last night I started feeling sick. I still set my alarm and considered going. But there were two things to consider: first, would I be well enough to go? I must say, in the graphic honesty characteristic of these posts, I was concerned I would have to spend more time in the little boys' room than the pew. The next concern was whether whatever I had was contagious. I didn't know whether it was the flu or food poisoning. But though Christmas is a time of sharing, it's not about sharing stomach troubles.

Mindy and I have said we're going to a church and a bar in every state in 2016. But this week was a reminder of the truth of the words of James 4: "13 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and get gain”; 14 whereas you do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. 15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” 16 As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil."
Mindy and I say we're going to a church and bar in every state. Is that evil? (Some may say the bar part is, but the church?) Whatever else this minor illness was, it was a reminder that next year's plans are dependent on God's will. Either of us could get sick. The 2006 minivan with 160,000 plus miles could conceivably have difficulties. Someone in our family could have an emergency and need our help. Our paths could cross storms, floods, twisters, or dogs and cats living together. We could just get the service time wrong, which we have done before.

So Mindy and I plan to go to a bar and a church in every state next year, God willing. Not to boast, but December 30th we plan to begin the adventure, first in Nevada. But we know we will be relying on God, family, friends, and the kindness of strangers.
-- Dean