When the kiddos and the Blushing Bride have a long weekend, we like to take advantage. This week they all had Friday off (as well as today–Columbus Day holiday), so we made plans to do a quick overnight camping trip. Yes, it is coming on Fall so the weather would be cooler, but the kids have been wanting to go, and we had the time. We found a nice family campground in Champaign, IL, where University of Illinois is located with several free museums housed  there.

We visited the John Phillip Sousa Center of American Music. The band director in charge not only showed us several antique instruments–including one from the American Civil War–but he also showed us some of the parts from “Stars and Stripes” in Sousa’s own hand! Then he made a copy of the 2nd clarinet part and gave it to our oldest daughter who is a beginning clarinet virtuoso. We then visited the Spurlock Museum and visited ancient cultures from Rome and Greece to Cherokee. It was great–Family time, God is good.

We arrived at the campground and the rain let up. So, the owner of the campground upgraded our tent site to an RV site (no charge) so we would not get as wet, and we got the tents up before more rain came. Nice people who take care of you, God is good.

We did get the fire going and had some supper topped off with s’mores and the kids decided to go on into the tents. H and I were enjoying the fire (even in a little drizzle) when another camper strolled by and commented on our pioneer spirit–really camping with the forecast as it was. Turns out he was a recently retired Pentecostal minister who along with his wife are taking about three months to travel ’round the country in an RV to encourage pastors. Blessing of prayer, a time in their motor home for popcorn and hot chocolate for the children (accompanied by games with a real-life, natural grandma)–New friends and blessings, God is good!

On our way home, the real adventure began. The van started running hot–really hot. Flashing lights and warning signs and–do you really think this van will make it the two-hour drive home? We found an open auto shop where they were willing to work us in for an oil change to take care of the problem. Several minutes later the oil change changed into a broken water pump–can’t get to it until Monday. The owner of the shop rented us another van to get home (all weekend, only charged for one day). Understanding businessmen, God is good.

Because today was also a school holiday, we all returned to get the van (and return the rental). After paying the bill and trading vehicles, we headed back home. We made it the one mile to the interstate before the lights started flashing and warnings began to shout–overheat, too hot, too hot, too hot. We called the shop and returned. Water pump turns into either blown head gasket or cracked head–either of which would cost more than the van is worth to repair. And now you’re wondering how to say, “God is good” in the situation as it is now–we need to replace the van (the broken one is still two hours away, but we did make it home–thanks to available and loving church members), but God is good!

He’s good because God is always good. He is especially good now because we can rely more heavily on Him as He continues to lead us, love us, and want us.

So, yes. God is good . . . all the time!

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