I had the most incredible blessing; a gorgeous Sunday afternoon and a perfect time to sit back and enjoy the warmth of the day – NOT. After worship, my lawn beckoned. Mulching done leaves raked and ready for Monday pickup I felt good; fresh air, exercise and cleanup – that was heaven for me, but the added bonus? I was able to stop and visit my young neighbor Sarah holding her 2 week old daughter while her young sons played on the grass. Oliva is the newest addition to our block and she’s beautiful!
There was a beehive of activity next door as Shari supervised her grandchildren raking leaves while their dad did fall maintenance.
No big deal right? Simple observations on an autumn afternoon. But you see as a single I view the family unit under attack. The family structure has changed. What I grew up with and experienced as normal is limited in today’s world and I thought I viewed it as demised, but then God graced me with this Sunday and I experienced both a young mother and a grandmother nurturing love in their children. I saw families playing, working, and enjoying the moment – and the element connecting it all? Laughter. Young boys giggling over their newborn sister; brothers and sisters laughing as they raked leaves and excited over the discovery of a tiny field mouse that they captured in a bucket and good naturedly inquired, “Do you want a pet? We can give him to you!” Their grins were contagious and I smiled in return. “No, I think not. I’ll pass on the offer. Thank you very much.”
Families. When I despair that it has disappeared, God nudged me and said, “Look. It’s still there.” Thank you Lord that love, nurturing and caring exist and when I see that I need to show my appreciation and encourage it. Rather than be discouraged I urge my sisters to open your eyes and ears and observe what God sees. Is He saddened by the onslaught being launched in today’s world? Yes, but He also gifts us with His word and prayer and to be diligent about our relationship to Him and each other.
Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it. Proverbs 22:6
Mentor a child, encourage a parent, pray for those families who are hurting and those who are strong to remain a positive influence to those around them.