When we talk about what is right and good about America, the story of Cindy and Steve can be held up as an example. They regularly go on mission trips to Mexico and Central America, putting to good use Steve’s “energizer bunny” work ethic and Cindy’s skills as a nurse practitioner in assisting underserved people in very rural and poor areas. Their work changes lives and seeds, plants or waters those who would come to know their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In their church, they sing in the choir, participate in an ongoing Bible study group, and have regular gatherings at their home, which over the years has become an oasis and house of regeneration for church family, missionaries, family and friends.
Located on the serene banks of a place called Portage Lakes, Ohio, Cindy and Steve’s property takes the form of a resort, but is not ostentatious or grandiose. It’s a home. Their home that they believe is God’s gift to them to share with others. On any given weekend spring, summer or fall, people come from all around to enjoy that gift. A tour of the lake in their pontoon boat can be had, or one can just float out and relax in the afternoon sun. Cooking is a big deal. There is always food that can be enjoyed on the inside or out on the patio facing the lake with the gentle sound of a specially-made waterfall and feature framing their hot tub spa. Kids can often be found on the inflatable water slide or playing various yard games.
Out back (which is the part of the property not facing the lake), it’s a different scene. Many friends and family have been bit by the recreational vehicle bug. Steve and Cindy accommodated by installing three 30-amp outlets for camper hookups. Steve maintains the area like a golf course green where the dogs can run, campers can experience a campfire (except Steve’s pyro tendencies usually result in a bonfire of huge proportions) and kids can play on an actual playground with swings, monkey bars, rope walks and a slide. There is even a small above-ground pool for an afternoon cooling down. Cindy and Steve even remodeled their downstairs bathroom to accommodate campers anytime day or night.
You can also play Pickle Ball on the court in the paved driveway. Steve and Cindy are happy to give lessons on how to play this fast-growing sport—but watch out, they won’t cut you any slack on getting a big whoopin’. They are pretty good players. Their gift is hospitality. Time at their place often should be scheduled because their home has become a popular setting for missionaries to take retreat, friends to enjoy boating, church groups to fellowship, and large family gatherings many times during the year. Hebrews 13:16 is Cindy and Steve’s mission: “And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” This is the America that we know and love. It’s there, despite what the media and politicians tell us.