Today was a great day. Probably the first real feeling that community is developing. Early this morning we made our weekly trip to the Farmer's market. We had planned to stay only a short time because we were going to the fair by the late morning. While at the market, I struck up a conversation again with Ben. He's the local agrarian farmer who looks like a blast from the 70's. Great guy. Really helpful and full of information that I am needing. I bought a hand-carved, segmented snake from him to use as a model for the children to make their own. While talking with him, a fellow farmer stopped over to talk as well. Amish looking man and his son but not acually Amish. We spent about an hour talking about faith, farming, and family. Here I was with two men, who looked like opposite characters in a story, and me agreeing on a whole bunch of the way we want to live. Strangely, what gave me the community feel was our involvement with food. The connecting for us was our intense desire to sustain our families with home-grown goods. Not only was I talking to collect information about a county just north of us for farming purposes, but also Amory struck up a conversation with Ben about raising chickens. She is reading several things relating to having chickens in our back yard. I sometimes tease her and tell her she is going to be the "chicken lady."
On the way home, as usual, Ildi and I talked about out trip "to town." Just kidding:) We were discussing that it is this type of community we are looking for in church. A place where everyone looks different but has the same values. A place where the expression of God is diverse and yet the theme of faith and family runs through. A place where scripture is taught and freedom to live life the way God intends you to live is encouraged. We couldn't help but notice the trend of most churches telling families how to live. Everyone fitting into the molds of the local congregation and seemingly trying to fit in and conform to the collective "look." All the appearances of community but a genuine feeling of disconnect.
Our journey out here has taken a different path than what I thought. Actually, I'm am no longer sure if I thought much past just moving out of California. I am extremely thankful to God for all He has given us, but I am more thankful for what He is doing in us right now.