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Pastor John’s View June 2020

Tales from the Mountain

Evan as I wrote the title for this month’s article, I had to stop and just say, “Whoa! How did we get to June and at this time of writing, I still have no idea when we will actually worship together physically.

I think I was eleven when dad and I drove out to the cinder hills east of Flagstaff in our 1948 Willy’s Jeep. It was painted battleship grey and had a homemade plywood top. Dad bought it on a trip back to Iowa and towed it home. Mom wasn’t happy. Dad and I spent a lot of Saturday and Sunday afternoons driving and hiking through the backcountry of Arizona in that little rig.

CinderHillsOn that particular Sunday afternoon in the cinder hills, dad stopped in cinder lake, perhaps a half-square mile of flat open space covered in who knows how many feet of cinders from the ancient volcanoes in Northern Az. Dad got out and told me to sit in the drivers seat. “Who, what? Okay!!!!” And so, the driving lessons began. I cold barely press the clutch in, and the three-on-the-floor was a handful. First gear wasn’t syncro (some of you will understand that) and coordinating the floor starter button and the gas was an education in itself.

I drove many miles in that old Jeep through the hills and canyons of Arizona and Utah (backroads, of course) looking through the steering wheel because I wasn’t yet tall enough to see over it. The funny thing was, I had to wait five years before I could drive legally on paved roads and that seemed like it would never happen.

Well, I don’t think we’ll have to wait five years, but it will take some time. By the time you read this we will have a framework for a plan in place based upon our conference plan and appropriate CDC guidelines. When we do get back together, we’ll do so with everyone’s health and safety in mind. With the myriad perspectives on covid 19 and conflicting understandings of what is and is not safe to do, we need some more time to be sure that the actions we take to not endanger the very people we are caring for. Philippians 2:4 comes to mind;

“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

Let’s walk this strange new journey together slowly and carefully lest we step off the unseen edge of a cliff. You are an incredible body of Christ who love on each other and encourage one another, and you are doing that in new ways and with tender care. Let us persevere the race put before us not only for our benefit but for the kingdom of God.

~Pastor John

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