Thursday, July 3, 2014

Go West (not so) Young Man!

When I first starting planning a sabbatical, I initially thought about traveling to the Four Corners section (where AZ, UT, CO & NM meet) for hiking and geocaching. However, as the plans began to progress, I found an opportunity to travel to northern WA for some much-need training on Logos Bible Software. Although Week 3 was a busy one (one of my two main travel weeks of the summer), it basically boiled down to three things - geocaching, sight-seeing, and Logos (four if you count cross-country travel round trip). Here's some of what Week 3 was about:

Geocaching: After arriving in Seattle late Sunday night, I drove south until midnight so that I would be within 75 minutes of Portland on Monday morning. Waking up early, I began driving south on what some refer to as the geocaching pilgrimage - to the site of the very first geocache. Although it's no longer there, there is a plaque commemorating the event and some nearby caches to find. Not only was I able to visit the "original stash plaque," but Tuesday was the day when I got to cache in Fremont, WA (northern suburb of Seattle) and visit Geocaching Headquarters! Finally, to add to my first caches in OR and WA, I crossed the border to White Rock, British Columbia for my first Canadian cache.

Sightseeing: This was a trip I did with my best friend, Scott Patterson. While he didn't travel to Portland with me on Monday, we planned to meet up later that day. On the way to meet Scott, I did my first non-geocaching sightseeing - Voodoo Doughnuts. Later that day we toured the Space Needle and went to the Red Sox-Mariners game. It's not often you get to see a team bat around in a game, but the Mariners did it twice - in the 4th and in the 7th. CF James Jones led off both innings and made the final out in both innings as well, going 1-4 in the two innings with a double to lead off the 7th. While in Seattle we also spent some time downtown at Pike Place Market and the original Starbucks.
Logos Bible Software: I have had this software on my computer for years (actually, since 2003 - thankfully as well, I wouldn't be able to afford it now!) and have even done a little training with it, but what I learned on Wednesday through Friday should prove to be invaluable when it comes to both personal study and sermon preparation! This program is amazing! We also got to take the tour of Logos' offices as well.

Coming home was a LONG day. I left the hotel in Seattle Saturday at 5 AM and landed in Charlotte at 10 PM. While I had planned to drive home to Reidsville, the spirit was willing but the flesh was definitely weak. I stopped just north of Charlotte (didn't get that far, did I?) and worshiped on Sunday at Lake Forest Church. I originally visited the campus a couple months ago for the Sticky Teams Conference and was curious what Sunday was like. It was what I imagined - great worship with a very laid-back atmosphere (complete with full coffee bar). I really liked how a child read the story of Noah from the Children's Bible to introduce the teaching.

All in all, it was a busy, fun, and productive week... but I'm glad to be back home. This week I'm praying for our student ministry MOVE trip, for the RCC family and their known needs, for our staff and elders and their leadership, and for God to be at work in each of our lives!

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