Jake Hillis invited me. He is a well-known, amateur body builder in the upper Craighead county area. Jake, or “Stiff” as the other Crossroaders call him, has been a good friend of mine for a long time and he likes to walk on his tippy toes. (He actually wore a tux to my wedding and snuck into a few of the pictures.)
The retreat was a lot of fun. We went camping at Spring River Oaks campground. Now I am NOT one for throwing away the blessings of my place in time, so the idea of “roughing it” for a night isn’t usually my idea of fun. (Except C.S. Lewis said there is no greater joy than a group of Christians around a fire.) Apparently, some of the other “men” weren’t into roughing it either. There were plug-in fans, a field-trip to a real-life restaurant, toilet paper and one guy (if you would call him that) brought a window unit to cool his tent during those muggy Spring River nights. Unfortunately, it didn’t work and even the best representative from Strong Arm Appliance Repair couldn’t fix it.
We met in J-town, ate wings, traveled to the campgrounds, put up the tents, watched people arguing in the river (like four groups in a row ready to smack heads with canoe paddles), compared tattoos, ate fish, ate ice cream, changed a flat, made a fire, played washers, went to sleep, woke up, saw deer, ate biscuits and gravy, ate more biscuits and gravy, took down the tents, bought fancy river shoes, canoed, got pummeled in water battles which Jake started, kayaked down the most fearsome waterfall man has ever seen on this mortal realm, tried to not look that angry guy in the eye, got in the truck and came home. Good times.
Trips like that remind me (and I am sure this is what C.S. Lewis was talking about)that we have fellowship with believers. I can hang out with a group of virtual strangers and have a good time because our hearts are united around a good and loving God. Everything He has given us is good. That includes fellowship, fires and corn nuggets.