The older you get, the more you appreciate family. I only get to spend about one week each year with my parents and my brother and his family. We were altogether for 3 of those days this year. For those of you who do not have regular or weekly opportunities to spend time with family, you know what it’s like to store up expectations for connecting and being together, just to feel overwhelmed by all that you desire for such a short amount of time. There is a delicate art to family reunions and vacations. I’m no pro; I’m a perpetual pupil. Nevertheless, here are some notes I’ve jotted down in reflection of my weekend with those that I see so little, but love so much.
1. Be flexible. Spending time together is more important than how perfectly orchestrated that time turns out to be.
2. There’s a right time to say everything. Think before speaking your mind, no matter how true or pure of heart you think you are.
3. Your family members aren’t always who they used to be. You aren’t either.
4. Keep short accounts.
5. Some of the best memories you'll ever make will be recounting the best memories of the past.
6. Wonderful time can be shared in silence with those you love.
7. It’s okay to break tradition in order to form new ones.
8. Everyone is going through something they’d love to share with someone willing to listen.
9. Relationships either grow or wane; they don't stay the same. You are either working towards one or the other.
10. Ten years from now, no one will remember what you said, but how you said it.
11. The gospel covers with grace the wounds that threaten to resurface again and again.
12. A better family begins with you loving Christ more, and loving yourself less.
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