Sunday, November 14, 2010

One more chance to rest

Well, the next day was Sunday, which had been my day off during the trip, the one day a week to chill and kick it, and after the previous night, I was rather ready for it. Maybe more than a little bit. Unfortunately, though, because I had gotten to my campsite so late the night before (around 1 AM ish) and because I had to bike back into town to get to church, I ended up waking up early, and not getting a whole lot of sleep. Whatever. It is what it is.

So, I went by a church that I had seen the night before in Gainesville, a church called Grand Avenue Baptist Church. And thankfully, I got there before the service started. So, I chilled for a little bit outside, and then joined them for the service. It was definitely more traditional than I'm used to, and smaller than I expected, but there was a definite sense of life and sincerity there, which I think is much more important in a congregation than immaculate presentation or impressive numbers.

Afterward, I had a chance to meet a number of people from the church. The pastor bought me lunch at his restaurant – sweet, yeah? A pastor, AND a restauranteur, among other things. I was impressed. Even more impressive, he spoke truth from pulpit, which can sometimes be amiss in church. Anyway, great guy, Bill Black.

That afternoon, I hung out with their youth pastor, Josh Carpenter, a man who is several years younger than me, and yet a youth pastor. I was again impressed, especially with his maturity. We got to talking about our adventures, our plans for life, and so on. We talked about our travels to various places, and I was pumped to find another guy who has a passion to see new things, to adventure. I also tried to convince him to take a bike trip (you should do it, Josh!).

His folks let me stay with them that night, and I was able to connect with them – John and Suzanne. Their whole family loves adventure! John and I talked for hours about how enamored we are with John Eldredge and with pursuing adventure. It's easy to converse with someone for hours when you agree on a lot of things. They encouraged me significantly in my bike trip and my plans for life. And they blessed me with a place to stay that night. Thanks so much, you guys!

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