I drove to Portland Saturday morning for a belated birthday with Tasha. I pulled in in the afternoon, and she and a friend, Drea, were going running. So I got a nap. Then we all went bookstore hopping. They were trying to find Captivating, and I was looking for William Barclay's Commentary on Acts. Three stops later, it was at Powells. Hurrah!
At Powells we spent some time in the coffee shop. As we were there, a costume 5K marathon ran by. And one of those weird experiences began, where a formerly estranged body of people, for a moment, become a group. And we all laughed at the Darth Vaders, Napoleon Dynamites, and the two person horse. (And whoever was the horse's hind end, that must have been a long race) And Jesus, with cross in tow. Someone should let him know that he rose. But then, a random guy with a robe and long hair might be harder to identify at a run. After the race ended, we all went back to anonymity, but we'd had a moment.
That night the three of us had a Seinfeld and Friends marathon with our favorite men: Ben and Jerry.
The next morning Drea drove home and Tasha and I went to Imago Dei -- a youngish church in Portland. They had rented an old Catholic church, but were Evangelical, but had the iconography on their altar for communion, and sang rearranged hymns. A very nice blend. The pastor gave a sermon on giving joyfully. At the end of it he mentioned that a pastor they support in Africa was trying to start two business through microfinance (a great program by the way). One was for 200 widows who were starting a farm, and some disabled men were wanting to manufacture soccer balls to sell to local schools. They needed $4,600. The first service, made up of young marrieds, college and singles (it's a very young congregation in general, though there was overall a large variety of people) gave almost 20,000 (they announced that after communion -- presumably whoever was totaling the offerings from before had just finished). And we were at the second service. Pretty stinking cool.
Tasha and I finished the marathon over tomato soup and toaster cheese, and I drove home. Great weekend.
Happy Birthday Tasha!