The bible always brings something new, and I comment at The End Time every day. Or twice. Or quadruple times. But here at The Quiet Life, all is, well, quiet.
I bought a John MacArthur study bible and I'm looking forward to start using that. At the same time I bought a neat little book about Lubec Maine. Lubec is the most eastern town in the US and it is my favorite little secret place where I used to vacation in the summer.
It was about 3 and a half hours' drive from where I lived in Gray Maine. The drive was beautiful as the further north and east you go in Maine the fewer vehicles you wrangle with. There is the occasional exception of the old logging truck here and there, but overall, the population density is so low that beyond Bangor, I hardly saw a car at all for an hour on end.
Lubec is at the end of a long peninsula and finishes at the Bay of Fundy. Next stop, Canada. The little town sits atop a high bluff where the 22-foot tides swoosh in and out, where the seals bask and the eagles perch. Where the fog bank rolls in and out in time with the fog horns that toot after it. The town has a little but well-stocked and clean library, a coffee shop, not much else and so much beauty it hurts your eyes.
The place I rented for a ridiculously low price, which also allowed cats, was Globe View Cottage. It was on a small dead end road overlooking Johnson Bay. The views were so dynamic because they changed every hour. The high tides swelling in and out changed the landscape, the fog rolling in and out did the same, and the animals that chased the tides were a joy to look at. There was a small fishing fleet and lobstering fleet that steamed in and out twice a day. It was glorious.
The view from that bay window looks out at this:
I traveled down a long and winding road for two miles to get to the cottage. At the end of the road intersecting the main drag there is a gas station and eat-in convenience store, and a small New England white clapboard Baptist church.
One year, in 2004 I think, I decided to attend Sunday Services at the church. In Lubec there is a large Congregational church, a Catholic church, Methodist church and something called Christian Temple. The town was settled, after all, 250 years ago by sea captains and mariners who were Godly and knew well the suddenness of life's end.
I had been saved a few months before but was not yet attending church. I thought that the Baptist church would be good to attend, for some reason, I say now, as the Spirit laughs. Anyway, that was the one He drew me to. It also happened to be across from the street where I come out of Globe View so I couldn't miss it or ignore it.
It is called Ridge Baptist Church and I was plenty nervous when I went in. It is a very small country church, at that time having maybe 30 congregants who were attending that particular day. There were also a lot of kids running up and down the handicapped ramp and being educated in other parts of the building.
I don't know if they get a lot of visitors there, but I was welcomed warmly and the service was absolutely sweet. I had very good feelings about the place and I've never forgotten it.
Now that the economic downturn has occurred and seems to be deepening, and now that I have been a church goer regularly for 6 years, I know well the vagaries of the dropping offering plate and the difficulties of keeping a church family together. I searched recently on Google for "Ridge Baptist Church" and I found two things. One was a lovely photo:
|Photo by Tom Genovese, a free Commons photo|
I have often wondered about little town like Lubec, out of the way places that have no industry and no opportunity for industry. The fish smoking and sardine canning industries had collapsed long ago, and now they rely on service industries such as tourism and hotels/B&B. And we all know how those are doing with the majority of Americans opting for staycations these days. Times are hard, no doubt about it.
As for that little church, you never know when a weary and lost traveler like myself may stumble in, and are greeted with the warmth of Jesus and the friendliness of the Holy Spirit. I carry that seed the people there offered me to this very day. We are all persevering in the faith, and we are united by our common love of the Savior. Though this church or that church may seem to have needs that exceed earthly solutions, we're all bound in the body of Christ, and I want to thank the people of Ridge Baptist and the small town of Lubec Maine for their hospitality and rest that has been offered to me so generously through the years.
"Remembering Lubec (ME): Stories from the Easternmost Point (Amercian Chronicles)." I will re-visit by reading.
And I can look at the photo of a small country church in the snow, and remember the warmth of the people there by faith, and pray for the day when we are all in each other's presence by sight.