Going back

I’ve been doing a lot of going back and forth lately.  Back to the church of my youth.   Back to the place of so many memories.  Back to the songs I know so well.

Dixie Valley

The church were I grew up is having its 75th anniversary this weekend.  As part of the music planned for the weekend celebration, I’ve been traveling there for choir practices.  Dixie Valley Church of God is where I went from being a child to an adult, where I met and courted Sweet William, where we married and where we served when our one and only son was born.

I played the organ.  Sweet William played the guitar.  We were charter members of the Dixie Valley Youth Choir in its prime.  They were good days.

Former members of the church and choir are coming from near and far away to practice and participate in the weekend services.  We are singing a lot of old songs, the toe-tapping hand-clapping gospel songs.  Sometimes they raise the rafters.

What started as a youth choir in the 1970s is now a group of multi-generational people.  Those of us in the original youth choir have aged.  There are balding and grey heads among us.  We’ve born children and are enjoying grandchildren.  Some have parted with spouses by death or divorce.  We’ve had our share of happiness but we’ve also swam in deep waters and rivers of difficulty.  More importantly we have experienced the grace of God through the years and we know, yes, we know without a doubt that our God is real.

The church of my youth has changed in so many ways.  Pastors have come and gone.  A host of members have left us by way of the grave.  This weekend we will remember and be thankful for our experiences together.

And at the end of the day, one thing will remain.  When it is all said and done, God is still faithful and His church is triumphant.

May we always remember.

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