Convention perspectives

road behind

Sometimes people ask what we DO at our religious convention.  Most would know now that I am not a part of an organizational religion, no committees, no headquarters, no board meetings, no budgets, no collections, no group missions.  All our effort goes into trying to know and love our God.  So at convention, the workers talk about that and we listen, we visit, most people have a little job that contributes to our communal meals or sleeping arrangements for the four days we are together.  And we try to let God help us understand the road we’ve been on and help us get prepared in our hearts for the road ahead.  I would never have imagined living alone in Iowa, but here I am, and the road here was a little rocky, but not more than I could handle.  Where tomorrow’s road will lead, I don’t know, but I trust that God is planning my way.

road ahead

Ahhh, convention

it was perfect.   ” What do we do at convention?” you might ask.  Well, we listen….and listen….and we’re together.  And we feebly try to express our thankfulness.  Not much, you might think, no activities, no business meetings, no tours….but we love it, because it’s what we believe heaven will be like.  And if we love heavenly things now, maybe we’ll find ourselves there someday.

convention shed1

Back Sides

It’s just natural to focus on the front, you know….that part you can see in the mirror.  I remember someone at convention speaking once about front yards and back yards.  Everyone keeps the front yard looking well kept….but you really find out what a person is like when you look in the back yard..or something like that!  I was impressed with the back sides of downtown Ames a while ago.  The backs of these stores do face a municipal parking lot, but still, I thought the backs of the stores showed a nice sense of community aesthetic and responsibility.

 

 

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Flowers and thin air

blue

So….Colorado….it’s……well…..quite different from Iowa, for sure.  It’s dry, it’s rocky, the soil seems thin and feeble and in many places, the altitude is high and the air is thin.  So why are the flower gardens more beautiful in Colorado than they are in the well watered mid-West?  I don’t know the biological or social science answer to this question, but the mystery got me to thinking.  Can there be too much of a good thing?  With ample water and high humidity, I know that plants can quickly succumb to disease.  What’s good for the plant is also good for the bug or fungus.  But in the dry, thin air of the West, perhaps roses struggle….and they win, because less can be more in many cases.  Less stuff, less junk, less clutter….just life and light equals amazing beauty.

Cow Fever

Cow1Cow3

Cow4Cow5

Cow tonguebaby cow

No, this is not some new disease. If you have it, you know it, and you never quite get rid of it. Mine started when I was in college at Purdue taking Animal Science 101 and had to spend a few hours at the Purdue Dairy Farm helping with milking. Cows…..they just rock. What else can I say? Big, sweet, friendly, laid back animals in a variety of beautiful colors and patterns, I never tire of hearing them yank some grass and chew chew chew. It’s such a peaceful sound. Then there is the sound of lazy tails swatting flies, huge deep loving eyes and tongues that feel like thick tickley duct tape. I love the smell of cows, the way they move, the way they casually check you out and then go back to their grazing. I love their adorable ears. And baby calves….well don’t even get me started!

These pics are from 2007 on a Sunday afternoon trip to Picket Fence Creamery for one of their tasting days. And speaking of tasting….ICE CREAM…where does it come from? Cows!