What is it about lawn mowing that is good for the soul? I suppose that my latent obsessive-compulsive tendencies are satiated by introducing straight lines to an otherwise crooked Vermont landscape. I wonder if part of our Imago Dei is seen in our love of putting things in order. Here I sit, on my perfectly patterned brick patio, and look across the field to straight rows of equally spaced mums, next to my regularly spaced wood siding on my symmetrically shaped house and . . . well you get the idea. The Bible speaks of the Lord making the crooked straight, and the rough places plain. That is what God does in the Christian’s life. All the crookedness and chaos he replaces with righteousness – “straightness” or perhaps better understood as “conformity to His image.” I imagine heaven as the ultimate feng shui – everything will be truly righteous!
After some much needed rain in the morning, the afternoon skies over South Windham cleared and the sun smiled upon the 200th anniversary celebration at the old brick meetinghouse. As befitting an old fashioned church picnic, those in attendance enjoyed a dinner of roast pork & turkey, baked beans, corn on the cob, biscuits, cornbread, homemade applesauce and of course, plenty of apple pie & homemade ice cream for dessert. The children participated in sack races, three-legged races, and other games from years gone by.
In the front of the sanctuary, Sunday School lesson posters from the 1880’s hung on the walls, and the tables displayed a collection of items reminding us of the people who worshipped the Lord here over the last two centuries. The slideshow of old photos from the village was especially popular, as modern technology allowed us to zoom in on details that are sometimes lost in a small picture.
On Sunday morning following the picnic, Pastor Griffin’s message reminded us of the lessons God has for us today as we look back to the founding of the Baptist Church in Windham in 1807. As the text from Psalm 89 says, “I will sing of the mercies of the LORD for ever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations.” Sunday night we were able to learn “new” songs from the 1843 hymnals found in the rafters of the church, helping us to connect with generations past.
Well, according to Isaiah 55:10-11 they do. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
Yesterday 24 people braved the April Nor’easter and several inches of snow to attend Sunday School and our AM service. We still have several more days of nasty weather ahead, but Spring is just around the corner. We just need to dig through the snow drifts to get there.
Last week Dave & Mark Onyon were hard at work installing the new wiring and lighting fixtures in the sanctuary. The fixtures came in on Friday, and were installed on Saturday so that they could be in for Easter morning. One of the “highlights” of the project was the addition of a new colonial chandelier that hangs from the same place that an old oil chandelier hung in previous generations.
Below are some photos from the project.
This year’s Vacation Bible School was another lesson in God’s goodness in our weakness. For those of you who have been involved in a VBS program before, you know that it tends to become 5 days of organized chaos. This year, however, in the seeming chaos, God blessed us more than we ever expected. As we planned for this year, we were hoping for 20 children throughout the week. Last year, on our highest day, we had 17 children. This year we had 26 children. It was a great encouragement to see how God gives the increase each year. Another blessing was the servant’s heart exhibited by the people of our church as we had 14 helpers this week. Kathy & I sincerely thank all of those who sacrificed their time to do the work of the ministry.
I have posted a few photos from the week below.
South Windham celebrated God’s goodness with a strawberry social on Saturday. The rainclouds which saturated the village in the morning diappeared in the afternoon as we enjoyed all things strawberry. The greatest blessing of the day was Keegan’s arrival, and we rejoiced in God’s blessing in preserving and healing this little boy. 560 dollars was given by the attendees as a special offering for Keegan and his family to help them with their future needs. We want to thank everyone who helped to make this day possible.
Below are some pictures from the Saturday. You will notice the new deck/discussion area is being put to good use. And actually, we only picked 124.98 lbs of strawberries.
Well, the mums are all planted, and now the final preparations for the Strawberry Social are at the top of the agenda. This Saturday the church will be resuming the tradition of celebrating the start of strawberry season by enjoying strawberries & cream, strawberry shortcake, chocolate dipped strawberries, etc., etc. You get the idea. We are also celebrating God’s provision for the ministry here in South Windham. We have been working on the building for the past two and a half years courtesy of a fund that was started several generations ago by the members of this church. We have been able to completely rennovate our Sunday School rooms and kitchen in phase 1 of the project. While there is still much work we plan to do, we are giving everyone an opportunity to view the work completed at an open house & social on Saturday from 5-7. If you are in the area, please stop by.