one to one

The neighbors let us come and pick apples from their tree again. We took a metal garden rake to be able to reach the higher apples, and picked enough to fill a five-gallon bucket. The upper half of the tree is still full with apples.

It was a slower, rainy Saturday morning over here. With the exception of the sweet potatoes and a zucchini plant that’s still going, the gardens are mostly done with now. This was basically my second time as a first-time gardener, and I’d say the results were pretty evenly mixed. The biggest disappointment was my pumpkin patch. About a month ago it became undeniably obvious the yellow vines would not be producing this year. I’m seeing beautiful orange pumpkins in the grocery stores now. $4.99 a piece.

My daughter and I worked on the apples this afternoon and made it through about half of the bucket. We made two pots of applesauce that are currently still sitting on the stove waiting to be spun up in the food processor then spooned into jars. This wasn’t a non-stop canning all the apples kind of day, but rather I was trying to find something semi-meaningful to do with my daughter. The combination of her being a teen and having no other sisters prompts me more to pay attention to her.

Sunday school begins tomorrow. I’m teaching the 6th-12 grade class and am planning on going through Starting at the End: Worldview, God’s Word & Your Future by Brad Alles. They had several piles of this book in the youth room which is the room I hang out in while the kids are taking their turns for piano lessons. I started looking through book and thought it could potentially be interesting for the kids. I’m looking forward to learning more about all of the “isms” listed in the table of contents, and also Christianity.

Maybe this was always there and I just wasn’t aware of it as a Christian kid growing up, but something that seems more prevalent these days are stories from people who’ve been hurt by the church. I look out at the wreckage of the American church landscape and feel like the kid looking out at all of the starfish stranded on the beach. Where do you start? He starts with reaching for one, picks him up, and throws him back into the ocean. A gentle kindness is the way to go, a broken arrow pointing home.

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