First, a few logistical notes.
We note how posting “every other day” is going. As in “every other day” as in “every day but this one,” “probably tomorrow,” “but for now I’m up to my ears food/ hosting/ working/ childcare/ cleaning/ chatting with wonderful people/ eating potato salad/ and so on.” However, the experiment did what I intended it to do: it brought back the writing lust. I have no regrets.
About this I mean.
If you go to the homepage of my blog and look at the menu across the top, you’ll see I added a page called The Dock. On it there’s a link to everything I’m sharing there (they’ll update it as we go). I don’t necessarily plan to link to that material on my blog otherwise, but that’s where you can find it if you’re interested.
Thank you for sharing your church stories with me last week; I was glad to hear from you. I am sorry to have caused so many tears. I wonder what we are grieving, and why it tugs so hard. One amazing thing born out of that post was fresh connection with many people from my past, through private messages or other online venues. Those ties are precious to me.
And now, our feature presentation… Why I Live in This Community.
- I think I live in this community because the Zook men are so cute.
- Also I am infatuated with my ramshackle hundred-some-years-old farmhouse that will not finish getting renovated and intrigues me and plagues my life out and lures me back again and again. It is my Home.
- I don’t live here because of the winters.
- Or the bugs
- Or the swamps
- Or the gray gray gray skies
- Or the local economy
- Although, come to think of it, though it took me years to adjust from fast-paced, wealthy, central Ohio to the slow and slightly dysfunctional backwater in which I live, NOW I wouldn’t trade that. Really. I like how people look at people here, and not at things.
- I know and love so many people. I cannot go to town without meeting people I know – not only my Mennonite friends, but all the folks I love walking the sidewalks and store aisles alongside me: the Presbyterian music director, a former caseworker, a dear friend I haven’t seen for weeks, a bio family member of a foster child, a neighbor I lived next to for five years, children I’ve loved since they were toddlers, that lady who worked on my braces, the Pizza Hut gal, our doctor. It’s like a treasure hunt, and every meeting is joy.
- Also I’m quite crazy about my church community, except during the moments of toddler misbehavior during church when I’d slay everything within reach if I had a weapon besides the quick and powerful word of God.
- But my church community is what keeps me sane. They are solid. They know how to give and receive. They care about thinking right as well as doing right. They know how to love people. They are not easily offended, shocked, or horrified. They produce the cutest kids. They make amazing food. They empower both men and women. They know how to lay down their preferences and differences for the sake of the brotherhood.
- We have an amazing Christian school, one that cares about every child, provides a wealth of experiences, and finds ways to build bridges connecting different ages and sets.
- We have lots of fun things to do within easy driving distance. Parks and water and a Great Lake and petting zoo ish things and campgrounds and traditions.
- I love traditions, how each month we attend events to which we’ve looked forward all year. I could never name them all. Church or school or town celebrations, gatherings with friends.
- And I’m probably missing a few other important reasons, like divine election.
- But the winters.
- But the people.
- So here I am.
Why do you live in yours?