Last week we returned from a whirlwind vacation. We drove from Raleigh, NC to Washington DC, to Drayton, ON, to Hamilton, ON, back to Drayton, to Grand Rapids, MI, to Dayton, OH, to Raleigh, to Morehead City, NC. Yes, Mark and Deacon are great travellers. I can’t tell you how grateful I am for that.

We spent the bulk of our time in Drayton. We laughed hard, played hard, discussed hard, and slept hard. Families drove from Grand Rapids, MI, Chicago, IL, and Guelph, ON to be together. My parents graciously hosted a growing family of 12 adults and 10 (#11 on the way!) grandchildren. God is good. We capped our time off in Drayton witnessing the best fireworks display in Canada on July 1
st. Drayton’s tribute to Canada’s birthday is always a highlight, and brings back warm memories of my childhood.

Spending a day in Hamilton, ON was very special as we spent time with friends. Those gatherings, along with another trip to Guelph visiting friends from PEI was such a blessing.

I have not stepped on the soil of West Michigan in two years. There was still a lingering sense of “home” when we drove into Grand Rapids. Two of my siblings and their families live in the area, and being there with them again conjured up wonderful memories. Grand Rapids as a city has also matured, and possesses an uncanny likeness to Raleigh.

Our final stop was Morehead City on North Carolina’s serene coast. We spent meaningful time with Heather’s parents. The last time I was in Morehead City was the day Heather and I became engaged. At that time, we quickly drove through the Outer Banks in one day. This summer we absorbed the beauty of Atlantic Beach and spent more time with family.

God is good.

Now that I am back, the journey before us is, to be honest, daunting. My church planting residency ends in September, and the work of starting a church begins. I
should know the nuts and bolts of planting a church by then. However, I still have much to learn, and no education beats onsite experience.

So September will mark a new chapter. Until then, the excitement still bubbles. I’m thankful for the Sabbath rest we have had, and now I am anticipating a fruitful summer and fall! We appreciate your continued, faithful prayers for us as we seek to discern God’s will in all the details in our lives here in North Carolina. Thank you!

Some highlights of the trip:
2013-07-17. Fish
Fishing at Conestoga River!

2013-07-19. Teen
The 4th of July parade near Grand Rapids was awesome! This particular float took me by surprise though.

Stopped by the birthplace of Bob Evans somewhere in Ohio.

We got to eat at the restaurant Heather and I ate at the day we got engaged in 2004! Interesting name, great food! It’s clean.

Here’s a panorama of the back of the restaurant.