Those that have prayed for the family over the past few days, yea, even the past year, thank you. Your prayers have not gone unanswered. As you may recall, Sunday marked one year since Grandpa’s passing. Not a day that I’ve looked forward too, but it’s not like I could exactly keep it from coming either.
It was good to be in the house of the Lord on a day such as this. Grandma handled it exceptionally well. One of our deacons sang How Great Thou Art while playing guitar. Our Youth/Assistant pastor preached the morning service. Rev. 19:4 was the text and it was a good reminder for why to be in church.
The afternoon service was conducted by the Maranatha Baptist College Brass Ensemble Even though the heat of the afternoon was exhausting, the powerful sound of the music was enough to keep me awake. They played the old hymns and had some wonderful arrangements to them. One thing that I thought was unique is that they had the words to the songs they played on a Power Point. Appropriate Scriptures were inserted in the interlude portions of the songs. Grandpa would have loved hearing the group. Who knows, maybe he did.
After church, we went up the Northfork. We decided to go ahead on into the Park since Mom has a pass that gets her and anyone that is in the vehicle with her free admission. We had a good view. I speculate that we figured on going as far as the lake and then coming back out. Whatever the plan, it was cut short as we didn’t even reach the summit of Sylvan Pass and we were stopped. Not only that, we were the first in what was yet to be a line. The flag-person (who had no flags, only a sign) told us that we had a 30 minute wait to endure. Because the church was having a young-married/college/career activity that evening, we decided to turn around. We explained to the flagless flag-person that we were locals, so it really was no problem to come back another day and possibly run into the same problem.
As we headed down the pass, I couldn’t help but laugh at the number of vehicles that were headed up. If any of them knew about the “expect possible 30 minute delays” notice, they were in for a shock if they assumed that we were clearing the way for them to not have a long wait and possibly be able to go on without a stop.
Our activity was great. Normally, I would be getting close to dead tired by 5 PM on a Sunday, but today was different. I suppose it was the adrenaline from getting to fellowship with folks of like precious faith and similar age.
Before the official start, the guys played some 4-on-4, two-hand touch football. We had a paintball activity slated for later, so don’t think we were “wimping out.” The football was some great fun, except my shoes, urrr, hiking boots, had NO traction on the Pastor’s lawn. Many a wrong sudden move threw me to the ground time and again. If it happened while I was in pursuit, I might even slide a few yards. Fortunately, the pastor has a soft lawn. That’s OK, I haven’t earned grass stains on my pants in a good while, so I had fun regardless. Even better was that the team I happened to be on couldn’t score. We even added a member halfway or so into the game, and we were still scoreless when dinner was called. The ladies were impressed that we actually made a prompt stop to eat. But when five of nine players leave the field, what are you going to do?
Our paintball (or should be called painball?) was fun as well. We did a bank robbery game, split up by gender. One team shot, the other had to make it through a wooded area to a metal semi-enclosure where a decaf coffee can was. Then the coffee can and all team members had to get back out. We learned that getting hit didn’t necessarily explode the paintball. So, if there was no blot of fresh paint, we kept playing. After the game, we were checking for welts left by paintballs. I didn’t figure I’d have any since the only pain I was feeling was from hitting my knee while diving into a culvert. When I got home, I noticed one on each hip and one on just below my right armpit. Now they are hardly noticeable. When I got up yesterday morning, and started getting ready, I noticed my left thigh had a sizable welt and that one is still there.
For what it’s worth (sympathy), the right hip welt was received after I crossed back into the safe zone after a long mad dash from the bank. As soon as I crossed the line, I dove to the ground, falling to my face, arms stretched out in front of me as if I were sliding into home plate. I lay there, motionless, but breathing in attempt to recharge as it were. Suddenly, I felt a very sharp pain on my side that caused me to cry out in pain. The shot came from somewhere on the ridge. I found out later the culprit wanted to shoot someone and I was the open target. From her perspective, it looked like I was only partway across the line, so I don’t hold it against her, even though at the moment of impact it sure felt like a cheap shot.