Today was a very nice day all the way around. First, while we had to get ready for 9:30a Sunday school, we had gone to bed early so getting up wasn’t a big deal. We had a nice breakfast and were on time. the 10:45a service was a little different today. First it was a special music service. A few times a year, the church will have special groups come and participate in the service highlighting music from different heritages. Today’s music was of Scottish and Welsh descent. It made for a nice departure from our usual service. They also highlighted the tartans (the various plaids) of the different Scottish clans. It was also new member Sunday so we gave up our usual “towards the back of the church and ideal for those with kids” seats for ones up front. It was very nice to be warmly welcomed by the members of the church and all of the new members received the congregation with the pastor after the service. What a nice place to be and one more step towards us completely settling in. And finally, the service lasted 1 hour and 40 minutes! That is WAY more than us Lutherans are used to. We are the in and out in one hour guaranteed church. We used to give my grandpa who was a Lutheran pastor a hard time about that.

The way home for a late lunch saw a Wal-Mart pit stop so I could grab some BBQ smokin’ gear — charcoal, lighter fluid and hickory chunks. Chicken was again on the menu and it was gonna be a beautiful day to do it. We hit 60F degrees on a sunny, cloudless sky. No NASCAR today so I could focus on the BBQ and whatever else. Which turned out to be running wire for the dogs underground invisible fence. We had this in California and it is a great product that keeps the dogs safe and where you want them. I didn’t know how much of the property I could circumnavigate, but I had 7 spools of 500′ wire and I was ready to use them. I was able to multi-task running the wire, stoking the fire, soaking the wood chunks, testing the dog collars and setting the training flags for most of the afternoon. When the chicken was done, so was the invisible fence — at least the dogs would be contained. I still need to go back and bury the wire. The only place I buried it was under the gravel driveway. But it is usable now and the dogs can spend more time outside. Which after today, they will want to do. It was so nice to have a breeze in your face, the sun shining down and not have to wear a jacket. The dogs just ran around with the kids and I was secure in the fact that they would all just stay around. Unfortunately, after dinner I went out to waterproof the wire nut connections and I could feel the cold front coming in from the west-northwest. It seems we are due some rain and possible snow throughout the rest of the week. Too bad. I was getting used to the fact that spring was here early.

On the way home from church, my wife and I chatted about the 10:45a service that has been our choice for the new church. We aren’t late service people. Although it can be a challenge, we like getting up early (we have to get up early for school and work, why not for church?), getting to church and having the rest of the day to get things done. Well, the 10:45a suits us so much better, not from a time standpoint, but because there are more people (4 to 5 times more), more kids, it is a louder service (so much the better to hide our kids’ noises with), and contemporary. While we would rather it was early, it gives us so much more that we are willing to sacrifice the day for it. That’s when we realized that we should be focusing the day on that priority — worshipping God and enjoying fellowship with family and friends. It seems in California, we always had something going on that we wanted to “get church out of the way” so we’d have the rest of the day. We did not take the time to relish the service, commune with others and enjoy the moment. We both agreed that from now on Sundays will be about getting a nice start in the morning without having to rush, learning in Sunday school, worshipping and communing at the 10:45a service and spending the rest of the day with family. If we can fit in a shopping trip or chore or two then so be it. But it will not be the driving force of the day. I look forward to many more Sundays where we just go to church, hang out as a family, BBQ smoke a meal, play in the pasture and enjoy the day.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net