Today is October 31st – Reformation Day in some traditions. In honor of that – since this is a Monday and I normally post a worship video, I’ll post a version of A Mighty Fortress is Our God by the Indiana Wesleyan University Chorale. Martin Luther wrote the hymn. Also here link to a Seedbed article called 7 Quick Facts about the Protestant Reformation. Next year will be the 500th anniversary of the day that Martin Luther nailed his 95 thesis to the door of Wittenburg Chapel.
Apparently I am more tired than I thought. Over the last few minutes, I’ve done some strange posting – and this is a reattempt at Sunday Night Thoughts. Tonight I am writing from our church’s “War Room.” It is our Fellowship Hall and it is also the basement of the parsonage. As I write I am listening to a CD called “Music Inspired by the Story.” The songs are inspired by the stories in the Bible. Starting next week, this will also be one of our Sunday School rooms. We are starting a new young adult Sunday School class, for which I am excited.
The weather up here has been a little different – and yet we haven’t gotten our first snow – not even snow flurries – in fact this Wednesday, the temp is supposed to be 68. It is interesting to see that there are still quite a few leaves on the trees. I am surprised that November 1st is right around the corner and yet there are still as many leaves on the trees as there are. We have had some cool and blustery days – Thursday and Friday.
My primary task this week was painting our office. It’s not finished – the painting is but not all the decorating – as soon as it is we will get some pictures up. The good news is that – except for a few minor things – we are unpacked from our move!
This week we have our regular meeting with the local ministerial pastors and on Saturday we have our church’s annual Harvest Dinner. Really looking forward to that.
Today was an awesome day – God is on the move at McCrae Brook – and I believe that it is because we are bathing our church in prayer. It was so dreary this morning and yet God showed up in a mighty way. We had over 25 in worship – that means we had over 25 in worship every Sunday in October. Our average is a little higher than that. Thank you for your prayers – God is working among us – and we are continuing to pray for revival – not only at our church – but in our community and the surrounding areas. We are planning on a revival this spring. We would appreciate your prayers.
That’s about all I have for this week. Blessings….
Almighty and merciful God, it is only by your gift that your faithful people offer you true and laudable service: Grant that we may run without stumbling to obtain your heavenly promises; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
I had a welcome surprise as I went out to run on this last Saturday of October. The temperature was 50 degrees. Not bad for the Northern Tier of Pennsylvania. I have been struggling to get in my mileage this month and was concerned at one point that I wouldn’t get in my 100 miles. The good news is that on Thursday I surpassed 100 miles for October and between, running and walking added another seven today. With plans to do a long run on Monday, I should be able to get into the mid 110’s. That makes three months in a row with over 100 miles and the fourth month this year at over 100. One month I had 95. As of today I have 136 miles to go to get to 1,000 miles for the year. That’s about 75 miles for November and December. I’d like to be over 100 for November if possible, because over the years December has been a struggle – and it will be colder here than it was in Virginia. My runs have been averaging right around a 9:15 mile – not terrible. I need to take off a few pounds in order to get faster. Right now I want to get into a maintenance mode for the winter and be ready to prepare for next year’s Park-to-Park Half Marathon in Virginia. I would like to finish that in under 2 hours.
As you can see, I am pleased with how things are going at the moment. Pressing On!
Yesterday, 130 years ago, the Statue of Liberty was dedicated by President Grover Cleveland. Below is a link to a 90 second history of the Statue from Time.com.
A couple of weeks ago I was having a conversation with a friend of mine about moving. I know she has moved but not hours away from where she grew up. I was telling her how stressful our latest move was. She replied moving is not that stressful.
So how is moving stressful? Here are some of the things you will never know about moving if you have never moved an hour or more away from where you have ever lived.
I tried to tell her that moving can be super stressful when you move state to state because of all the rules you have to follow. One of the things that was stressful for us was getting our new state ID’s (Driver’s License). In addition to that there was getting the titles and registrations transfered – and the required inspections. In the state of Pennsylvania, car registrations are supposed to be transferred within 20 days of moving. In order to do that you need a valid PA driver’s license and insurance. Where we live, our local drivers license center is only open two days a week and it is 25 minutes away – and only takes cash or check. Let’s just say those opening days were crazy, because you also have to have proof of residence – which for a pastor’s family – living in a parsonage can be difficult sometimes. Utility bills count as proof of residency, but as pastors – the church pays those – so they don’t come in our name. When we were looking for a new church, we were hoping to move to somewhere that had the same bank, so we didn’t have to change banks. Our bank in Virginia now has a presence in Pennsylvania, but doesn’t quite reach to where we are. Banks have similar rules – due to the Patriot act.
If you’ve never moved away from somewhere you have called home – you may never experience some of these, especially if you only move from one house to another in the same general area – say moving across the Shenandoah Valley, like we did when we first moved to Staunton.
When you finally get done with the all the above, that’s when the real fun begins. When you move you have to find things you need every day – grocery store, doctors, hairstylist, the best places to eat, etc. – the things that we take for granted every day, that we need to get everything done.
Then there is the loneliness that you have when you move and leave all your friends and do not know any one where you move. It is hard to fit in especially when you move to a small town where everyone has lived there all their lives. It is in these little town it is really hard to fit in. Basically, when you move you must start you with your life. Trying to find where you will fit in and make friends.
The good thing is that we are starting to feel more at home. Those first couple weeks were hard as we got acclimated to our new environment. Yes, we still miss our friends from Virginia. This week we even got a nice note – in fact, all this week, we have been getting encouraging notes – from all directions. God must have known we needed encouragement. We are getting settled into our new digs – Dale just painted our office and it looks really nice.
Thank you for all your prayers during our transition.