We are now the oldest of our family tribe, and today as we gathered to remember the life and faith of my sister-in-law, once again I thought about the passing of time. My house was opened to the clan for lunch, and as rooms filled with siblings, children and cousins, we easily talked about memories of being in my grandmother’s small house on special occasions. Now, however, we looked at each other knowing that we are what our parents once were — the elders. Even though I’ve always been the youngest on both sides of the family, even I felt old today.

But there is something soothing in family gatherings. Even in loss, even when age catches up to our physical bodies, even when hair changes to a silvery glow…we can rest and relax with those who really do know us best, because they’ve known us from our roots. They know what’s behind that look, that twitch, that loss of hearing — we’re just carrying on what we’ve inherited from generations past, and that’s OK. It’s who we are.

Our parents raised us to be individuals (a mistake they later regretted), but even with our differences, we are still related for better or worse, and I’m thankful the better comes out when the worse happens to each of us. In this, I thank the Lord for my siblings.

No matter the differences, find the good and thank the Lord. I’m doing that for mine. Try it for yours.

Grace and Peace

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