Sunday, September 9, 2007

church picnic


This morning our church that has three services to accommodate the congregation in our facility became "One Church . ..In One Place . . .On One Day". What a fantastic time we had. As I sat there watching the crowd congregate in the stadium I was reminded of church picnics when I was little.
The focus then was to celebrate the summer and enjoy an outdoor service with the promise of a massive picnic provided by every family and then an afternoon of games with our church friends. Remember trying to make sure you got your own mom's potato salad or your best friends mom's cake that you loved?
On one occasion I received a black eye in an ill derived plan of leading your blindfolded partner passing by the team coming from the opposite direction with the goal of making it to the opposite side before the opposite team makes it to yours. If you're thinking to yourself that you can't make heads or tails out of my race description, I can't say I blame you, even now, the rules are a bit sketchy in my recollection. I recall the Sunday School leaders looking at each other wondering who's bright idea that race had been. No . . ..church picnics in our parts have taken on a whole new focus.

As I waited for the service to begin, I thought of you. It was easy to do, the beautiful scenery in the background and the welcoming worship songs led me to pray for all of you that need a special touch from the Lord. It was amazing how many of your names came to mind.

I thought about how unbelievably blessed we are to live in a country that allows freedom to worship Jesus. If you read this post from a country that also allows freedom to have church picnics and services in the open . . .you are blessed as well.
We not only had the opportunity to see folks that go to other services we also found ourselves being challenged to take our faith seriously. The theme this year was "Bourne Again Ultimatum ". . .(they always enjoy doing a bit of a spoof on current culture).
I speak fairly freely of my faith in Jesus on this blog and it has always been my goal to live this out in my everyday life. I once again found myself searching my own heart and my motives seeking to be sure that my priorities for daily living are right where they should be. I am humbled by the number of readers everyday that find their way to visit me.
If I saw you in the mall or down the way . . .would I be real and consistent with what I say? It seemed like pretty heavy stuff to think of on a beautiful church picnic day. (sometimes I need to think of heavy things . .even on a gorgeous day) As we sang "Crown Him . .crown Him . ." my heart pounded with the desire to do just that. (click HERE to hear a sample of the singing.

After the service was over we were treated to a church picnic 2007 style. Wraps made by the Bread Garden. I just love it. Show up, sit in the sunshine, visit with friends and folks all around, and then line up to eat a free wrap all the while listening to fantastic bands . . .
If you don't have a place to join in on a church picnic . . ..start looking .. . we all need a place to belong, I found mine.
Enjoy the rest of the afternoon, I'm heading to the oven to take out a blackberry dessert.

12 comments:

  1. It was a great afternoon! Thanks for reminding me how church picnics used to be ... seems so long ago!

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  2. Picnics are so fun! Our church had a community bbq today, bands too and bouncers for the kids. Lots of fun meeting new neighbors and chatting with friends. So we had the same sort of day, Lovella!
    We had hotdogs...the wraps are a great idea.

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  3. Oh, yes, I remember church picnics when I was a child ! We looked forward to it all year.

    You had a beautiful day for yours!!

    And yes, I agree, how incredibly thankful we need to be for our freedom to worship and speak of our faith !!
    Lets make the most of that freedom and not waste it!!

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  4. o.k. that's weird. i have never met you, but i was sitting in the stands and i saw this person who looked like you taking pictures of people in the stands, and i thought to myself, boy that looks like lovella...if it is, i wonder if she is taking pictures for her blog...and i was right! it was a lovely day, i i couldn't help but stare out at mt. baker and be in awe as we sang the songs about "my GOD he's always gonnna be".
    it was nice to share the day with you...even if it was anonymously!

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  5. I just love church picnics! They bring back so many memories of the annual picnics my church would have.

    The day looked so bright and beautiful - a perfect day to enjoy the freedoms we have and the opportunity to openly worship our God.

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  6. Hey, I didn't see you there! I guess there's just still sooo many people that it's hard to see everyone. Yes, it was a beautiful day, however, I was sitting in the sun for the service part and it was very hard to concentrate when I felt like I was going to melt. :) I'm definitely glad it was sunny though, instead of raining, so I'm trying not to complain. I have a nice sunglasses sunburn on my face to show for it today and I'm very thankful that the bee that flew up my skirt didn't decide to sting. :O

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  7. We go to a growing country church. Although we are moving with the times the flavor still lingers of small country church style. Our worship leader did an awesome job. Children read scripture, sang, played the drums and took up the offering. I sat by the open window and half way through the service could smell the BBQ's that the men were busy tending to. We had both services combined as well which I just love. The best part was seeing all the young families, my own included, enjoying the church family. Each church has it's own flavor. Once in a while I like to try different ones,but yesterday I liked ours. It was comfy, I was at home, I was blessed. Glad you had such a great day too!

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  8. Now I really wish I hadn't chosen to 'skip out' of our church picnic yesterday! We had out-of-town family visiting and thought they may not want to be part of the chaos of our 'fall kick-off, but...it would have been nice! My little granddaughter's invited all their school friends & were so excited about the whole thing. It's actually been years since I could relax & enjoy a church picnic, since I looked after the food for the past ten years. I'm thinking if I'm ever in charge again, it will be wraps from the Bread Garden...that's a great idea & 'food safe' too.

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  9. what a great way to celebrate faith and introduce it to the community. there are so many people looking for the right fit, sounds like you found yours. it also seems like a very large church. easy for some people to get lost in the cracks, but with people like you around i'm sure that there are less of them.

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  10. We had our church picnic a few weeks ago. The kids seem to get the most out of it, with games and prizes, and cotton candy and ice cream! The grown-ups sit under a huge white tent and get some sweet time of fellowship, while many of the teens work the kiddie games. It really is a wonderful time, and we look forward to it every year. Fortunately, we supplement thwe church picnic with potlucks every 3 months or so. Always seem to be eatin'!

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  11. I remember the church picnics !!! we have sort of the same thing now... we have a Motorcycle day and all the people who drive motorcycles ride them to church that day... your day looks a wonderful time was had by all !!!!!!!!!

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  12. I'm sorry we didn't get to see the whole service. Ethan wasn't feeling well and the noise was bothering his ears and Owen was trying to break out of his stroller. One day we'll be able to stay to enjoy the festivities. It's been a long time! Glad you had such a nice time. :)

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Thank you!