Hello 2009! This New Year's was very unusual for us- normally we sort of muddle through, try not to fall asleep, and crawl into bed a minute past. This year, we were at a family reunion over the holiday. All 28 of us. The four siblings (of which my mom is the oldest), their spouses. Three children in my family, eight children in my aunt's family, two in my eldest uncle's family, and then one child of the youngest brother. Then, two spouses in this generation, mine, and Kim's. (My cousin.) Then my four kiddos. Three generations. It was pretty cool, all in all. Except for the loving stomach bug we passed from family to family. That, we could have done without!
On New Year's Eve, we had a family communion time. All of the heads of households shared a verse or two, and what it had meant in our family lives that year. After that we spent some time in prayer, and then celebrated communion. It felt right, for the change of the year. I remember sitting there thinking that there was nowhere else I would rather have been at that very moment. I couldn't help but think of the legacy of my grandparents, and how God has bound up the broken places in our family, and how it was amazing that we were all sitting there, not only getting along, but praising God together. That's a miracle in and of itself much anymore!
It's really gotten me to thinking about the ties that bind us together, both as biological families and as spiritual families. The people we are in community with on a day to day basis. Those people who love and support you and cheer you on. I know that I tend to take these people for granted- it's easy to do in the day to day living of life- but, man, what an effect they have each had on my lives over the years. It was nice to have this time set apart to remember and appreciate my own family members, but also the 'lights along the path' of my life. I've been thinking about Hebrews 12:1-3:
It is such a fitting verse for entering into a new year, filled with new possibilities, dilemmas, races to be run. Here's to cheering you on in 2009!
Photo by G.B.C. Used with permission.