Today is our 100th day in Dulce, New Mexico. On the one hand that seems like a long time and on the other hand it seems like not very long at all. Given that it is my day off it seems like a good time to pause and consider some of what has gone on since our arrival.
We quickly settled into a house that is in really good shape for being nearly 100 years old. I'll give credit where credit is due and thank Robin for "driving the bus" in getting things unpacked and in place. It took about one week and was pretty hectic, but if it was left to me there would still be boxes scattered throughout the house, waiting until who knows when.
Being unpacked and settled allowed us to begin hosting our new friends. We have had guests over for dinner a number of times. We have begun holding a Bible study in our home. And in our first month we even had an open house for our congregation, as a way of thanking them for the warm welcome they extended to us. Thanks again go to Robin for all of her hard work in the many ways she has made our home a place to welcome others.
I am settling in to a new vocation. This past Sunday was the 14th in a row that I preached, exceeding by one the number of times I preached in the 3+ years before we came here. And while preaching may be the most visible aspect of ministry here it is far from the only thing. I could make a list of the many tasks that come my way but it wouldn't be complete, because nearly every week brings something that I wasn't aware of the week before.
Dulce is a relatively small community, one that is a bit spread out geographically relative to its population. We have learned what services are available here and what things we need to get elsewhere. It is quiet and the pace is slow, and that seems to suit us just fine.
And it is beautiful, in its own way. I lived in southeast Minnesota for 27 years and grew to love the area. And in a similar fashion I am growing to love the beauty unique to this area. One person advised us to take lots of pictures now, while things are new for us, but I am pretty sure that I will still be stopping to look around and enjoy the sights until our last day here.
The first one hundred days have been pretty good. While we still think of the Midwest as "home," particularly as we make plans to go back and visit our families next year, Dulce has very much become home for us. Robin and I feel a strong sense of being called here. We feel that a number of experiences in the preceding years were preparing us to serve God here, though we had no idea of that at the time. We are thankful for the many people who have prayed, and are praying, for our ministry here.
Our prayer today is one of thanks to God for bringing us to this place, and that He would enable us to serve Him well while we are here, however many more days, months or years that may be.