Trip Start Aug 21, 2010
Trip End Dec 31, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Indiana
Saturday, September 4, 2010

Our journey east brought us through Noblesville, Indiana. Last year at this time, we stayed with Mike and Kathy Whitesell on our way east. Our stay with them was so fun and refreshing, we were excited to drop by again.
Since then, Mike Whitesell just recently received a promotion to the pastoral staff. Kathy was also hired at the church.
They are such wonderful hosts, and we immediately feel at home with them. We arrived in the late evening after our drive from St. Louis, so we shared some conversation about the past year before retiring to a very comfortable sleep.
Saturday was a chill day. In the afternoon, we visited Carmel, where the four of us walked down some nice trails through the arts district. Our walk concluded with dinner at Bub's, home of the Big Ugly Burger. Their challenge is if you can eat their entire 1-lb. burger, you get your picture on their wall. Of course, you're free to have their half-pound or quarter-pound burgers as well. And, considering we'd all have to sit through church together, we all opted to split a half-pounder with our spouse. We felt much better for it, but I have been challenged to tackle the Big Ugly next time we're in town... Game on.

Like I mentioned, we had church that evening. Grace Community Church is a large bustling chuch with four services over the course of the weekend. The service on Saturday night was about communion, and we partook of communion at tables of ten or so. It was meant to simulate the more interpersonal nature of communion. It was a nice change of pace. Grace Community has put much effort into utilizing the resources available to a large chuch, while focusing on discipleship of individuals and small groups. It was refreshing to see and hear of a megachurch not stray from the basics and be distracted by shiny lights and sets.

That evening, the Whitesells' kids and grandkids came over after church. We initiated their new fire pit with an evening of s'mores. It felt and smelled like autumn. I'm afraid summer might be over... but we'll be in the northeast for fall, and it will be beautiful. So bring it on :)

Our two nights with the Whitesells were very refreshing, and we still have a visit to Cedarville to look forward to! After church on Sunday, we headed out toward Ohio to continue our cross-country visits.
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