So a few weeks back it was -20 here in the North Country. Pastor Kirk Douglas who was at Gwinner North Dakota for many years had a chance for some vacation time in Florida. Pastor Douglas is now at New York Mills MN. He sent me a note. Here it is just as it was received, typos and all.
“I thought you might find this a grin. Tammy and I were at Mexico Beach Fl two weeks ago spending 10 days with my folks. Besides sucking up some heat and sun on the gulf. WE had an opportunity to worship with a new lcms church plant there called living water Lutheran church. Their practice is if the temp is above 50 degrees that they have the service on the beach. David Gieseking is the church planter there and does a great job with the people of the congregation and community. Out of the 60 + people 4 people sitting in front of us were from Minot. Uf-Da as one of them from Bottineau originally said, (gave him away) and knew Tammy’s family. Go figure. But the most fun thing was all four had been given help from Hope Village in rebuilding their homes. Now get this some folk from Gwinner had been part of one of the crews that came to help at one of these folk’s homes. How these folk got to Mexico Beach Florida, was someone, from the crews that came to help them, (I don’t know where they were from) owns a home in Mexico Beach and has been giving families that they had helped a week free there in Fl. None of these folk had a relationship with any kind of church in Minot but have been attending LCMS congregations ever since the rebuild.”
We have written long and hard about the work that was done at Hope Village and the help received. More connections – Mr’s Douglas is the sister of Joel Brandvold who heads up Shepherds Hill at the Crossroads. I was born in Bottineau so who knows, some of the folks on the beach might have been my relatives. Thanks again to all those who went and helped in Minot, who gave gifts, and offered prayer. Thanks again to Dahlstrom Motors in Oslo for the donation of a Suburban to use for transporting workers and supplies.
What really bothers me in the picture is this – the church is on the beach if it is above 50 degrees. The folks in the picture are wearing jackets. The Sunday this was taken in Florida it was – 20 in North Dakota and my wife’s car wouldn’t start. Oh well, as someone said the other day it is March here in the North country. Spring is close and it’s only 6 months until winter again.