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Evalgelical Lutheran Church in America Northeastern Ohio Synod
Letters from Pastor Alan Smearsoll

July 2019

Ah, summertime! July is that month where America relaxes. Family vacations are at a peak. School is far from children’s thoughts. One of my favorite childhood memories is the July that our family took three weeks to travel out west and explore things like Mount Rushmore, Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon. What a time that was for all of us.

The month of July brings with it a favorite vegetable of mine – sweet corn, namely – corn on the cob! Growing up we had three large gardens and one of the staples was sweet corn. There would be times where all we had for supper was corn on the cob. The times spent helping Dad pick the corn and Mom freeze it might not have seemed like it at the time, but they were priceless.

Then there are the memories of visiting Grandma and Grandpa’s house in the summer, sometimes around the 4th of July, and playing with the cousins and spitting watermelon seeds and   going swimming at the local public pool.

Make these memories for your children and your grandchildren this summer. Take them to places they may only get to this once in their life. Let them see that “virtual reality” has nothing on actually being there. Help them to be “kids” in a world that increasingly puts pressure on them to grow up too soon. The world has changed since I was a youth. But, while the world is ever changing and generation after generation have their time, those who remember surround them. Young and old grow together, God’s great design.

I saw something on Facebook today that said more and more millennials do not know how to read a paper map. While that may be shocking, there is nothing wrong with it. They don’t have to. GPS gets them there. After all, how many of us know how to read the night sky to navigate as did our ancestors? Pull out a map and use it with your children/grandchildren to plan a trip together this summer. In return, let them show you how to use Google Maps J.

May God bless your summer with youthful enthusiasm and aged wisdom.

Pastor Alan
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