Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Things that went unsaid....
Ken and I could not afford to own a "second home" when our children were young. As a matter of fact, we never really went on a real vacation until Gwen was in 6th grade and Doug was in 3rd grade. The truth is, we had mounds of medical bills from Doug's health issues. Both Ken and I would have loved to be able to bring our kids on wonderful trips. But the truth was, all that we could ever manage were yearly trips to visit my family in Minnesota. The picture above was one of those summer trips. Gwen and Doug got to enjoy being at Lake Maud for a few days. They got to meet several of my favorite relatives and see the places that were so important to me during my childhood. Today I realized that these "vacations" might not have happened if our situation was different. Because of our yearly visits with my mom (and her visits to our house in November) my children got to have a real relationship with their grandma. And they got to be at "the lake". That was really an amazing gift for my children.
You know experiencing a family tragedy makes you evaluate what is really important. And I can tell you that money falls way down the list. Family and being together move up to the top. Finding things that bring joy and peace are also very near the top of that list. For me, my relationship with Jesus (which was already on the top of that list) has become my lifeline. Living in this fallen world, life is simply not fair. And that means that lots and lots of really bad things happen every day. To lots and lots of people. And the thing is, it really doesn't matter if the people are "good" or if they are "bad". It is just the nature of the world. This life is nothing about what happens to you, but it is all about how you handle what ever circumstance you find yourself in. For me, without Jesus as the top of that list, well.....I can't imagine. I don't know how people go through these things without Jesus. Because of His death, we can have the assurance of eternal life. And in that is the hope and the joy and the peace in awful circumstances. And sometimes, when you find yourself in more of a downward track than an upward track, Jesus will use even a sunset, or the weather, or a smile, or a hug to turn you around. And then hope springs up and peace and joy follow that.
I encourage you all to take some time to really evaluate what is important to you. Make sure that Jesus is at the top of that list. If you don't know Jesus, or aren't sure where you stand with Him, find someone to talk with.... and if you don't know who that might be, just send me a message. I'll help you find someone. More than that, don't pass up the opportunity to talk to those around you about all those important issues. Don't forget to thank your mom and dad.....maybe for no reason at all. Celebrate today. Be together with those you love.
Jesus, thank you for the reminder today to honor and celebrate what is really important. Thank you for your presence and love. Holy Spirit, reach out to the many reading this blog who have challenging situations right now. Pour out your great love and comfort that will break the power of anxiety and fear. Send rivers of encouragement and joy that restores their hearts. Amen