Many people have the regular tradition of a family reunion, with more cousins than you can count, matching t-shirts and lots of fun activities. With relatives on the West coast, many on the East coast, and quite a few overseas our family has accomplished gathering together only twice in 30 years. Both events were big, amazingly well-organized, and a long time ago. (And, yes, we had matching t-shirts)!
When my Aunt Margie recently planned a mini-reunion dinner in Washington DC I looked forward to seeing some of my cousins from California, Boston, Myrtle Beach, and Virginia. The evening flew by as we shared what we are doing now as well as memories of what it was like to grow up in the Sweet family. Our grandparents, Gen. Joseph and Betty Sweet, both devoted Christ followers and strict disciplinarians, made a lasting impact on their children and grandchildren.
That evening we sang songs - both silly and meaningful. We laughed about sitting under Grandmother Sweet’s watchful eye as she reminded us to eat our toast correctly - “points first”! And then laughed again about how all of us cut our bread diagonally now, because that’s the “correct” way to do it. We marveled at the wisdom and gentleness of the General. We gratefully remembered our grandparents praying for each of us by name every day. Every day!
Gathering together as family is something like being the Church. Certainly not because we are so wonderful, but because Christ is. Like many families, we are politically and theologically diverse. We are ethnically diverse, too, by marriage and adoption. We have well-known authors, musicians and professors. But mostly we are just ordinary folks, broken and needy like everyone else. What ties us together is deeper and stronger than DNA…we belong to God the Father and his Son, Jesus Christ.
The Lord reminds us again and again that we are God’s own children adopted into the family of faith. That means every week when we gather to worship, we experience a mini “family reunion”. No one is an orphan. We are part of God’s faith family. We belong! Because of Christ we love gathering, singing, laughing, sharing and remembering.
In worship, we gratefully acknowledge the lasting impact of our Heavenly Father, who prays for us by name. Are you making a lasting impact by praying for your brothers and sisters in Christ?
Blessings and love,