Once upon a time, back in our city days, when we lived at Casa D’Lovely, our family would host an annual Halloween Hoopla. Over the years it grew into huge party filled with kids and adults in custom, complete with a rowdy game of bobbin’ for apples, some sort of epic battle (usually Lord of the Rings/Harry Potter/Star Wars inspired) and some serious trick-or-treating. Also there were Mummy Dogs. Always.
When we moved to the country the parties ended and so did the Mummy Dogs. And the decorating for Halloween – because for some reason Halloween decorations (unlike their Advent/Christmas counterparts) don’t bring me any joy on their own – they require an event.
So for 4 years we had been pretty Spookless around these parts. Until this year. This year, we brought them the Mummy Dogs for our Small Group’s Halloween- inspired dinner, (but this time Miles made them instead of me. My, how times have changed. The first time I made them he was still in diapers…) Also, in addition to the Mummy Dogs. I even put out a few Halloween Decorations including some of my banners for the Shoppe days.
Moving to the farm has been amazing and strange and lovely and surprising – in good and hard ways. Including around issues of community, While we didn’t completely lose our city community by moving 45 minutes away , changing schools and going to/working at a new church, it did significantly change things. The people we used to see weekly or monthly we now see once or twice or three times a year. Which I don’t love, but also can’t seem to remedy. Our lives move in such separate orbits now, that getting together requires the moving of mountains, which is doable but not often.
But now, after a year of hosting a church Small Group and doing the work of digging into our little town and building friendships, we are finally forming a new community here. And more than ever I am convinced that regular, on-the-calendar, gatherings are essential. That creating a rhythm of intentional community is as important a spiritual practice as creating a rhythm of prayer, a rhythm of worship, or a rhythm of rest.
Like Jack Kerouac, I believe in “a good home, in sane and sound living, in good food, good times, work, faith and hope.” But I also believe that all of these things take intention. None of them just crop up without making room, without being really purposeful, without staying the course.
I have more to say on all of this, especially about what loneliness is doing to our culture, our kids, our country, and how we as Christians must/should/need to respond, and what part having a Rule of Life and community both play into all of this, but until I form those thoughts, I want to just lay this down here on the ol’ blog and celebrate the return of the Mummy Dogs and a community with which to share them.
Thanks be to God.