The autumn season is quickly fading as the swirl of Christmas celebrations, decorating, shopping, and hopefully, worshipping, surrounds us full force. Our combined Thanksgiving and Christmas celebration with my youngest daughter, Dennae, and her husband, Richie, and their three boys (Dustin, 6, Hunter, 4, and Cannon, 9 months) was held this past weekend. They drove 400 miles from Kentucky to be with us and could stay for only 36 hours. But we made the most of those hours and created yet another wonderful set of memories.
I cherish the times I have with my family members, as we're scattered all over the place now. Michigan, Kentucky, Florida, Mississippi--all hold loved ones and each one is quite a distance from the others. It's a long trip, no matter who's doing the traveling or which direction we're heading. In our case, it's literally "over the river and through the woods," to get to grandmother's house (that would be me). In fact, there are many rivers and many forested highways between me and the ones I love, but the Lord continues to provide the ways and means for us to be together.
I often remind myself that it wasn't so long ago that families were separated by the westward movement and many never saw their loved ones again. Traveling by covered wagon or overland by train or stagecoach was a whole lot different from today's transportation methods. Not only was it time-consuming, but the dangers along the way were daunting. Today's transportation, though frustrating, time-consuming (in our eyes, at least) and often expensive, does afford us the opportunity to visit our loved ones frequently. I'll take that over waving goodbye to the back end of a covered wagon any day of the week!
The Lord has been generous, as always, with His bounty during the past twelve months. Our family has been mightily blessed with the addition of two little boys--that makes four grandsons now--and my brother was married earlier this year. Our collective health continues to be good and our lives continue to be filled with the good things our Heavenly Father provides. I look forward to what He has in mind for us next year.
Thank You, Father, for giving us hope for the future, for all You have done for me and my loved ones this year, and for all that You will do for us this coming year. May we continue to be aware of Your unmnatched power, glory, kindness, and love, and live our lives accordingly. Thank You for giving us the means and the time to spend precious occasions with each other. In Your glorious Son's name, I pray. Amen.
Until the next time...