Thursday, August 21, 2008

Places that Inspire

“Hi there, how are you?” the big man with the deep tan said while beaming from ear to ear. Within a few feet he said again, “Hi there, you heading down to the beach again?” Another short distance and he was at it again, “Hi David, are you going the wrong way… did you forget something?” – a light hearted comment to a new friend that he met a short while ago.

Within a short distance as we walked of less than a city block, he had greeted at least a half dozen people from well over 70 years of age down to 13 years old. And they all knew him!

Every once in a while you run across some one that is infectious with their attitude. They bubble with attitude that draws people. Most politicians are this way. There is something about them that makes you stop and look. When they greet you they beam. When they kiss your baby it is ok. No one wonders at the almost strange actions of this man… that the next guy to you – WOULD NEVER DO!

Meet the “Mayor of Elim”, lovingly dubbed by his fellow campers. He is a big man with a big heart. They love him. Recently he and his wife sold their other trailer at the camp ground to move closer to the center of the action – right beside the main thorough fare where they could see everyone. Where most people would seek a less active spot at a camp ground – not the Mayor of Elim – he LOVES PEOPLE! I dare say that he will know absolutely everyone in the camp ground before the summer is up.

As the Mayor of Elim reads this he will wonder at me. I would be the first one to sell the Mayor my trailer by the busy roadside – as I want to be in a quiet spot – miles from people that are swarming around the heart of the Camp Ground!

It’s all about perspective. It’s all about places that inspire.

Oh – yes – some of you know the Mayor of Elim. Some reading this Blog know Terry Manley well – others that have not yet met him need to know him. Here he is the Mayor of Elim!
The Elim part of the Title is the name the Christian Camp ground where a whole lot of Christians mass together near a lake to rub their Christianity off on each other. Though it is beautiful and one of the nicest camp grounds around the area – there are a whole lot of people very close by. And you have to love people close by… if you love Elim.

But that is why the Manleys – Terry and Marion have moved into the Manley Mansion in the Heart of Elim City. Manleys love people.

Here is a couple shots of their Mansion – directly across from the Tuck Shop, Store and Snack Shop – right on the main road to the pool.
(above - the view from the Front Porch)

The Manley’s Mansion is a place that inspires.

Now you may have wondered at the photo at the beginning of this posting. This is the sight that you see from the Bridge at Gannon Narrows looking out towards the Mayor of Elim’s realm at 9 PM on August 19, 2008. He kind of lives some where over the Island in the foreground and a bit to the right.

From the air you can see his place better – kind of…
But back to the original thought… “places that inspire”… have you been to one this summer? When you are there… it something about being alone with God and maybe alone with people that is fascinating. It is a place that inspires.

The simple thought here is I have to want to be inspired in order to get something out of that spot. The spot will only provide me opportunity to receive.

The Manley Mansion situated right beside a busy little camp road is total inspiration for them. In fact for Terry is has brought a new title for him – “Mayor”.

But what is inspiring for me is – God is trying to get us to that place where we can be inspired… where our soul can be reached and stretched no matter what is happening around us and to us.

Later in the evening the Manley guided us to an evening service where the speaker shared the familiar story of Joseph of the Bible. As he wove the words together I was caught by his own testimony which he placed for all to see – the life he had lived and the one of Joseph demonstrated the presence of God in places that inspired. The places the speaker had been and the places that Joseph had lived through were not altogether inspiring for most – but with God they were just right.

So it is with me. What I have walked through over these years – I could have endured – or moved through the places and experiences without even noticing what was going on. Worse yet I could have regretted that my “mansion” was too close to the thorough fare of life and wished for something different.

Instead, like Terry, I have chosen to be the kind of person that everyone stops to talk to. There is nothing more important than people. That is why we are BOTH ‘Mayors’ in our own little worlds. He at his trailer – me on my block.

It is all about perspective… as to how the place inspires.

I wish for you that special kind of blessing this mid summer week. May you reach out as you reach in for that inspiration. May you look up to see inside.

And if you are ever in the Elim Camp ground – the Mayor is not hard to find. Park your car close to the office area, not far from the large ‘Tabernacle”…. Then begin to walk toward the lake. From the shaded front porch of the mansion on your left will come a call, “Hi how are you? Would you like to come in and sit down?” You will have met the Mayor of Elim. Watch out he is infectious!

~ Murray Lincoln ~

No comments: