1 Thessalonians 2:17
But, brothers and sisters, when we were orphaned by being separated from you for a short time (in person, not in thought), out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you.
As my children are growing up, we are fortunate to live near their grandparents and my brother, Bill, and his family. Getting together for birthdays and holidays is never a problem. Nor are frequent overnight stays with Nana and Grandpa or visiting with cousins.
This is so opposite from my own upbringing. We live in Georgia, but our entire extended family resides in Massachusetts. Because of the distance and the cost, we can only visit once a year for about two weeks during the summer.
All too short a time. But, for me, jam-packed with precious memories.
So, I am endlessly grateful to have a loving, extended family close at hand for son, Daniel, and daughter, Sarah. What a blessing!
But, my, how things have changed . . .
While most of the family still lives within striking distance, Bill and his wife pull up roots several years ago and move to the Georgia coast. It's a good six-hour drive from where we live. Needless to say, though my brother is often back up this way due to the nature of his business, he is on business. And, we can't get together.
This past year, we plan to gather everyone for a reunion; first, for Thanksgiving, then for Christmas and my dad's birthday. One circumstance after another stands in the way. We make every effort.
But, it doesn't happen.
We do manage to have Danny's mom, my parents, and, of course, the kids to Thanksgiving. But, without Bill and his family, it just isn't the same.
While we may be physically separated, however, my thoughts and prayers are always with them.
Here's hoping that 2012 will bring us that marvelous reunion we need and desire!
Do you live near family, or are you separated by long distances?
Will you pray with me?
We give thanks today, Father, for all our family members, near and far. We pray that You would bless and keep them. Help us to remember that, no matter the distance apart, the bonds of love between us can never be broken. Amen.
Psalms 50, (59, 60) or 114, 115
1 Thessalonians 2:13-20