Why the long silence? I just spent a wonderful five days driving to and from Edmonton with the days in between spent fellowshipping with brothers and sisters in the Lord. It has taken me a few days to catch up on laundry and sleep and I am still running somewhat behind.
I think the highlight of the entire weekend was our worship service. We came in and sat down and I looked around me during the service and felt overcome by love of my brothers and sisters in Christ. It is always good to spend time with the Lord's people no matter where they may be found, but the delight is sharpest and sweetest when you are with those of like mind and heart. To sing psalms together, to sit at the Lord's Table communing with Him and with each other, to see my son admitted to the Visible Church were but a foretaste of Heaven's delights. What joy awaits us when we are all gathered together before the Lord, only this time with no presence of sin to divide us from each other and from our loved ones who own Christ but not our covenants.
I do have some regrets -- the weekend flew by so fast and there were so many wonderful people to meet and get to know, that I never did get to spend the time with each of them that I would have liked to. I regret that some friends I have known well and loved now live far away. In at least one instance I was overcome by tears upon seeing a well loved face that I hadn't seen for a while. The regrets were more than made up for by all the benefits however. My family was billeted in the same home as my beloved pastor, Greg Price, and his wife, Lovely Lonna. He is a man with a true shepherd's heart for God's flock and he never fails to endear himself to me or my family when we are with him. I count him one of the greatest of God's mercies to me as there isn't a week that goes by when I am not challenged, encouraged, edified, rebuked, and uplifted by his sermons.
I regret that I allowed some to take pictures of me. I look like such a COW in my overalls! Oh well. Next time I will move faster and confiscate the cameras.
James seemed to be a hit. If it weren't for the fact that he needed the occasional diaper change and feeding, I wouldn't have seen him all weekend. Some of the younger girls did a wonderful job in packing him around everywhere. I would feed James and then look up and find one of them hovering close by waiting to snatch and run. Their tender care enabled me to visit with others more freely. James now feels that being held and snuggled all day and night and repeatedly told how sweet and cute he is, is his due and it took an entire day of forcible confinement in his car seat with only occasional breaks as we drove home to convince him otherwise.
It was brought to my attention what a little wiseacre my son Garnet has become. Garnet will be six later this month. Pastor Price, as is his endearing custom when speaking to younger children, called Garnet "honey." Garnet promptly informed him he was a BOY and NOT a honey. A little while later when Garnet was on his way to bed, Pastor Price teased him by saying, "Goodnight, Honey!" Garnet stopped in his tracks, turned around and silently regarded him for a moment before replying, "Goodnight, Babe" and then headed down to his bed. He also informed me that he has four "chicks." When I expressed puzzlement over what in the world he could be talking about, he named four of the teen girls there. Mothers take note and guard your daughters. I can see I am going to have an interesting time with him when he is older.
So now it is over and I am suffering a slight emotional let down. The good times had to come to an end, but, Lord willing, there is always next year.