What I Did on My Vacation

 

The Unholy Trinity of McLaren, Pagitt, and Jones emerge from the primordial soup (photo by Courtney Perry)

I’m back from a brief digital sabbath, and my first pixels must be in gratitude to Scot Miller for so ably guest posting in my absence. Based on the comments, many of you resonated with Scot’s posts, particularly the one on his journey to progressive Christianity. I’ve given Scot an open invitation to guest post whenever he wants, so keep an eye out for him (and when you see his thoughtful comments, encourage him to expand them into full-fledged posts).

Over the weekend, Courtney and I joined Doug and Shelley Pagitt at the home of Brian and Grace McLaren in southwest Florida. The McLarens have been wanting to have us down there for several years, and this year the timing and the frequent flier miles happened to coincide perfectly.

Among other things, we:

A McLaren tortoise (photo by Courtney Perry)

  • played tennis (the first time in 20 years for me)
  • kayaked through the intercoastal waterways
  • communed with Brian’s tortoises
  • watched the sun set over the Gulf of Mexico
  • talked about the Trinity
  • grilled steaks
  • hung out with Roy and Leslie Terry
  • ate fish that Brian had caught the day before (so good!)
  • took long runs
  • talked presidential politics
  • drank too much coffee
  • talked about books, publishing, and speaking
  • prayed the blessings of John O’Donohue

Mainly, I read. On Sunday, I read the New York Times cover-to-cover, a holiday tradition for me. I also read Lauren Winner’s beautiful new memoir, Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis; I’ll blog about it next week. Brian had me read a section of Miroslav Volf’s Allah: A Christian Response. I continued my re-read of Moltmann’s God in Creation. And my current novel is Wolf Hall (which is amazing).

I did not even bring a computer with me, for the first time in many years. I did not check Facebook or Twitter even once (though I admit to scrolling through email about once a day to see if there was anything urgent). The result of that sabbath was, I must say, a mix. On the one hand, I felt a clear head to truly engage the people and the nature around me. On the other hand, I also experienced a creeping anxiety about all of the emails that I knew were piling up.

Even so, I’m looking forward to my next digital sabbath, whenever that may be…

  • http://twitter.com/diecast David

    Roy is a beast of a man, although only in the physical sense… such a gentle soul. Are you in Claremont?

  • Kathy

    Love the picture of the unholy trinity emerging from the sea to spread their nefarious influence on young-earth-dwelling believers. What rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?

  • Dale Friesen

    I thought you were at Elephant Room 2. ;)

  • Andy Lord

    Sounds a great vacation…. Wolf Hall is very good… not sure about reading emails though… I need to leave all computer stuff behind… but amidst the cold winter here I can dream of time out in the sea!

  • http://cantleaveunsaid.wordpress.com/ Dave Buerstetta

    Great, now on top of everything else, I’m going to have to check out O’Donohue.

    Here’s hoping we’ll eventually get back to taking a look at “Sweet Heaven When I Die.”

    Those really are great pictures. You’d think Courtney was a professional or something. ;-)


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