Home > The Slow Grow > Passenger Jim

Passenger Jim

Little Dade Schissler is 3; maybe 4.  He’s a sweet, generous – if not sticky – little guy.  He and his grandparents came camping with our church this weekend.  Before I saw him, I heard him.  I wasn’t sure he was talking to me because I wasn’t used to hearing my new nickname, but my ears soon became accustomed to it.  I held his hand and we walked down the road together in the afternoon on Sunday, and he seemed to enjoy being the only one who calls me this new professional name for a pastor:  “Passenger Jim!”

It seems to have fit…at least this weekend.  We had roughly 75 people camping at Tri Ponds campground; about 25 miles away from our church building.  Around 50 of them were Embody regulars, and 25 were friends or family of Embody regulars.  The idea was this: I like to camp, and if you like to camp…let’s do it in each other’s general vacinity.  It’s a lot about doing “real. life. together.” and it worked great.

I saw some cool things.  Let me tell you about about one of them.  While heading to the bathroom Saturday evening I saw, but the light of a campfire, 6 or 7 people lining up and being handed little pieces of paper and then, out of nowhere, there were about 20 people singing happy birthday and holding these signs that spelled out “Happy Birthday” all for Jen.  A cake with 24 candles started to blaze and there was Dade in the middle of it all seeing that these church people love his aunt Jen on her birthday.  One of the great things about it was that the people holding letters for the sign and many of the folks singing were Embody folks who, I’m pretty confident, didn’t know Jen really well until the camping trip.  But here they were joining in on a surprise birthday party for her.

And I had nothing to do with it.  I am coming to realize more and more that I really am along for the ride as this church gets its start.  God’s moving in individual lives and in our corporate life together in ways that I have no way of knowing about.  And this really is the best part because if I was aware of all that God was up to I would either mess it up, get in the way, or try to take over.  I am content to be “Passenger Jim” the happy camper.

  1. Brett VB
    August 30, 2010 at 7:19 am

    Passenger Jim also goes along for the ride when it comes to packing up his campsite…

    Great post Jim, thanks for the story, it was a great weekend, and I was really glad to get to be a part of it.

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