Going to Texas was a great thing for us to do on our vacation. It not only gave us a chance to see Jeff and Donna and Katie Gage (and to meet Eli), but it gave us a chance to talk about things. Especially about the church and things we'd like to see happen with the coming of the new pastor this summer. Talking with Jeff was fantastic. It is so refreshing to talk to someone with similar thoughts and worldviews and with whom I can share all the frustrations that are common to any ministry, I'm sure. And we figured out one of the reasons we all (from seminary) seem to keep in touch with the Gages and not with each other -- we all count Katie as "ours" since she was born right there... And they were the first family our age we got to hang out with.
So here I am, listening to the Carter Family singing "Will the Circle Be Unbroken" -- some of this music was what I heard when I was a kid at Macedonia, with Paul Johnson playing fiddle, but otherwise it came to me as an adult that I am misplaced. I should be Appalachian. I should have grown up in some holler down by a crick. I remember watching "Where the Red Fern Grows" (one of those dog movies that made me bawl, even in public) and wishing that I lived in the mountains. Those were the Ozarks, but I have a real fondness for the Smokeys. That was why I had to take Tara there -- I remember the guy who invited us over to their campsite just because, well, anyone who brings their loved one all the way from Chicago to East Tennessee just because he loves East Tennessee, well, that's pretty impressive.
Now the Carter Family is singing "Carry me Back to Old Virginia" which of course reminds me of Ival and our ASP trip last summer. I can't imagine a better experience than our team had. It was fantastic...
Well, back to the pile of work that awaits me.