Two weeks ago we hosted our 9th Annual Cousin camp at our farm. This year we had 21 grandchildren ages 4-18, and it was crazy, wild, and great fun!
This past weekend we hosted a “Big Kids camp.” John’s three siblings plus his first cousin and their spouses joined us for a reunion, also at our farm. There were just 10 of us-the eldest age 82, and it was tame, quiet, and great fun!
Together we represented 243 years of marriage. That’s a lot of wear and tear between frail human beings. A lot of PTA meetings, doctors visits, hospital stays, misunderstandings, apologies, and reconciliations. Among us we have had countless blessings but many heartaches and disappointments too. So we decided to focus some of our conversation on God’s faithfulness in the midst of all these years.
One of the blessings of getting older is that we have more years to remember the ways in which we have experienced God’s faithfulness. John asked each of us to think back over our lives in 2-decade segments-our first 20 years, the ages 20-40, 40-60, and so on. We took turns sharing specific events during these years where looking back we see the faithfulness of God. It was fun to learn things about one another that we did not know. And it was hilarious to hear stories of those who have gone before us!
It can be easy for older folks to focus on aches and pains, people who disappoint you, and the problems of today’s culture. Thinking about God’s faithfulness on the other hand leads us to thanksgiving. Our sharing time led into times of sweet prayer for one another and our kids and grandkids.
Now, I know this may be an unusual family reunion. None of us chooses the family that we are born into or even the parents who raise us. That’s God’s choice. And He will ultimately use everything for good. John and I were fortunate to be born into a heritage of strong faith on both sides. We come from praying parents and grandparents-praying not perfect. God’s grace has been evident.
The good news is that no matter what your heritage is you can be the first of a generation of families who walks in God’s ways. Your grand children can one day gather to thank God for your prayers and to recall His faithfulness in their lives. Our God loves to do a new thing. Ezekiel 36:26