Monday, August 11, 2008

Rain, rain.

Matt here.

Emily made a post a few weeks ago from Lake Pymatuning at my grandparents' place. So, I figured I'd post some pictures. I've been going there all my life and it's one of my favorite places to spend my time.

Sunsets are always great here.

Bad weather over the horizon at night. Foreshadowing...

I got to catch some fish...

...and see people I love.

But now we're stuck just 10 miles east of where we were this morning. We had planned on crossing the border into Massachusetts today but got a late start waiting on bike shops to open and then got caught under a huge system of storms that never let up. So, we got a hotel and decided to just pray that tomorrow's better. It's rained so much in the past week and we're all getting really tired of it. Sometimes it's fun and provides a free shower:

But most of the time, it's a drag. Yesterday, we got stuck under an overpass changing flats and waiting for the lightning to stop.

And we've invested in top of the line water-repellent clothing:

We end on Sunday in Boston and we're all very ready for the airport. It's just a matter of getting through this rain... something that I'm a bit nervous about. In any case, we're getting on the road early tomorrow morning to try and get back on track.

People have been great to us in New York, even if the weather hasn't. We had three great church visits here (in Jamestown, Rochester, and Clay) where we met a lot of really encouraging people. We honestly enjoyed all of our conversations and had a great time. Later in the week, we rolled into Frankfort, NY not knowing where we were going to stay (the only church that picked up their phones couldn't take us in for various insurance reasons I guess). We sat down at a little Italian place and before we knew it, we'd been invited into a home for the first dry night we'd had in days. Our new friend Helen welcomed us in and made us a great breakfast in the morning. Then, yesterday when we were caught out in yet another thunderstorm, we knocked on the door of the nearest farm house and were welcomed in by Bev Brown, a wonderfully hospitable woman who warmed us up with her handmade quilts and fed us lunch.

Eric was joking around the other day that it'll be weird to be back in Chicago next week as "just another person" without some kind of adventurous tale told by our spandex and helmet lines. Will we still be treated like this? I hope so, but I'm not sure.

And I can't help but think about how much better the world would be if we treated one another like this all the time. Christ modeled hospitality and sacrifice and we've witnessed people all over America following the example. But have my homeless friends seen the same thing? I'm not sure. The exceptional thing about Christ was that he loved the outcasts and the untouchables. There are plenty of people that need a roof over their heads or a meal or a simple friendly conversation and they don't get it because they aren't college kids with a collection of good stories to tell. Christ loved the overlooked and the oppressed and it's my hope that they'll be loved like we have this summer.


Laura said...

Wow--I'll be praying for the end of your trip and that the weather holds off-- you all are amazing! It looks/sounds as though you had a great time at at your grandparents. Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

It was super rainy for us in the New England states as well. We were told that it is the rainiest weather in Maine in the last 130 years or so!!
It's exciting your group is almost done!! It seems like you really touched a lot of people.