Monday, March 12, 2012

Goodbye, California...

A post in two parts and two places

I am as Californian as it gets... or I have been. I was born in California, grew up in California, was saved in California, married and started a family in California, and have never lived anywhere else other than in California.

California is a pretty wonderful state. Just about everything you could want is in California, whether it be deserts, ocean, snow, lakes and streams: it's all there. It's a big, long state, and rich in beauty and natural resources.

However prosperity without Gospel faith and living always tends to ruin, and so it has gone in California. Tyrannical, obsessive over-regulation has is strangling the life out of its commerce and sending businesses running for friendlier climes, while politicians continue to multiply spending and taxation and fees in an inexorable cycle. While many faithful folks and ministries remain, California has a trajectory that is pretty dismal.

But it has a special place to me, for all the reasons I listed and more. My favorite area in the attainable world (this leaves out Scotland, for instance) is the Eastern Sierra. I've gone there probably since I was 2 years old. I remember 5-cent coffee at Schat's Bakkery in Bishop. As a young man, I traveled there as often as I could, scouting out places I'd eventually bring my wife and kids one day. And I got to do that, to my great joy.

But everything is subject to change except God, even one's lifelong place of living. Particularly when in pursuit of a larger goal.

And so last Friday I found myself seeing California recede in my rear-view mirror, at the start of a looong drive east and south.

Continued here


Scot said...

Wait, no more IT jokes?


This sounds like Proverbs 13:12 has finally flowered after patient sowing, watering, and waiting.


CR said...

Congratulations, again. Will you still have your blog?

mikeb said...

Wait. I'm applying to Masters Seminary in smoggy SoCal, leaving the beautiful hill country of TX, and you're telling me it's so bad you're coming to Texas? :(

mikeb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anna said...

Congratulations - I also escaped the People's Republic of New England for Texas, and life has never been better. The escape hatch for me proved to be a fully funded PhD at Texas A&M, about an hour and a half drive from Houston.

Rob said...

Texas is a much more awesome state. You're making a good move.

Mizz Harpy said...

Congratulations. They didn't tell you about the humidity did they? They never warn anyone about the humidity or the need to sprout gills. But congratulations anyway. AND... no state income tax!

Andy Dollahite said...


Congrats on your new pursuits. I echo your love of the Sierra, and if you ever make trips back to the left coast and want some high country company, be sure to send me an email.

As for Houston, I've been once. I had to walk 1/3 of a mile in a suit in the late August humidity... almost killed me and I had to take a paper towel shower before my interview. But I left thinking that it was a fantastic city despite the assault on my internal thermostat, and I expect y'all will grow to love your new home.

Shine on,

DJP said...

Well Andy, They say that after the first summer, you acclimate.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

GET OUT!!! (Uh, I mean that in the most figurative sense...)


Glad we got to meet the family in person in CA last fall, as I doubt we'll be in Houston any time soon... but so happy you're back in the saddle as a pastor!

Julie and family

Sonja said...

Dan, by linking to that old post, you're pastoring me by showing steadfast faith and God's grace in your own life in a big, big way.

And recently you posted about blogging and your hope that people you will never hear from were helped in some way. And by your blogging, the Lord turned His providence towards you where a reader connected you to a wonderful church in need of a wonderful pastor.

Being pastorless and looking, I've often thought how much I'd enjoy on all levels being in fellowship led by you. But it's too long a drive. And too hot down there and gators and snakes.

Can I give you a cyberhug in rejoicing? And what is your first sermon going to be? Yes, I'm nosey. :)

Mike Westfall said...

California's loss, Houston's gain.
Congrats, Pastor.

I do hope you will still be able to enjoy the Sierra Nevada occasionally..

Nick Rolland said...

Praise God, pastor! Preach the word, shepherd you flock.

Kyle said...

My Dad pastors a small Baptist church just a few miles down Hwy6/FM1960 from Copperfield. Y'all should connect: Mills Road Baptist Church

Larry Thompson said...

I am very happy for you to have found a pastorate. I live in Fort Worth, but my youngest daughter and son-in-law live in Houston, and not too far from your church. I am going there on Friday because she is being induced to have her first baby. There are some expected complications, so I am not sure if we will get free for church this week end, but maybe on another trip. If you need anything in Fort Worth, just let me know. (



Deborah said...

Working your way closer to Scotland, I see ;)

DJP said...

Seriously, we all noted with joy that in Houston we are living closer than ever to Scotland. So, yes.