A Sunday drive

Conversation heard at 2nd Christian Reformed Church between two attractive young women this morning:  “I was wearing my tights and some snow boots because it was cold, and my dad was watching the guys around me and he told me to change because he didn’t like the way they were looking at me.  I said, ‘Dad, it’s just the fashion!’ and he said, ‘I don’t care.  They aren’t looking at the fashion.’  So I figured, he is my dad and I changed.”  I haven’t heard that anywhere else we’ve been, not even in the Bible belt!

This morning we went to Mark’s church first, but when we got seated inside, Mark realized it was Stake Conference weekend so we left.  We had found a pretty good seat and since they were expecting a bunch more people, he said it was still probably an hour before that service would have started, and I’d have missed going to 2nd Christian Reformed Church this morning.  Instead we took a drive around the neighborhoods of Lynden until time to go to my church.  2CRC had been recommended to me by Aunt Marg.  She had never attended there but she’d heard good things about it.  I had looked it up on line ahead of time, and I wasn’t too sure about it.  For one thing, they make no bones about the fact that they are Calvinists and believe in predestination.  Predestination is a belief that only certain people are destined to be saved.  God has those people picked out ahead of time and nothing anyone can do can put them on God’s list or take them off.  As a universalist Quaker, I don’t believe that.  I believe that God will keep reaching out in love till we are all saved.

However, never having been to a Dutch Reformed church before, I wanted to see what it was like.  First thing I noticed, in contrast to last week, was that people kept coming up and greeting us and making us feel welcome.  The pastor ran the whole service himself, with a little help from others.  He lead the singing, he did children’s time, he did the sermon, and he did it all with great enthusiasm.  He was a very positive person–not at all my image of a Calvinist–and his message was easily understandable and actionable.  The music was hymns.  Yay!  I think they did one chorus at the end with drums, but it had more depth to it than I’ve found choruses usually do.  I loved the music.  So what do I do with that?  There’s another church I want to try next week.  It’s the church my relatives went to when I used to visit them as a kid.  We’ll see what happens after that.

We came home and changed out of our Sunday clothes and went for a drive.  We headed toward the hills to the east of Lynden.  I should say first that the weather has been foggy and overcast most of the time since we’ve been here.  We turned up a gravel road that lead up a high foothill and the forest was dense on both sides of the road.  At one point Mark wanted to turn around and go back, but I had spotted a bit of light on the treetops up ahead and I encouraged him to keep going.  We broke out above the clouds.  The sky was blue, the sun was shining, and the mountains looked like islands in a sea of clouds.  We got out and reveled in the sun!  Here are some pictures:

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