This evening, after two of our kids had taken naps earlier in the day, we decided to head to the local county fair in hopes of getting everyone tired enough to go to sleep well tonight. As we made our way about half way through the fairgrounds, we crossed paths with about a dozen or more people we knew, and many we had not talked to in months or years. We were only at the fair for 1-2 hours, but well over half was spent in conversation with others. When you are toting around three small kids, long conversations are a bore for them, but a joy for parents who rarely have many adult conversations anymore. Years ago, when I was single, I used to say that when people got married or had kids, they fell off the face of the earth, as they seemed to disappear from the social networks they had frequented. I realized that when life circumstances change, opportunities to do the things we once did may change as well. Each phase of life comes with its pros and cons. What do you enjoy most about the phase of life you are in right now, and what things bother you?
Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Romans 12:15
Before I moved to this area, I had never heard the response to ‘How are you doing?’ as ‘Fair to Midland.’ It’s just another way of saying, ‘not great or bad, but ok.’ I’ve found its nice to check in with old friends or family when things are just normal, and not in crisis mode. I traveled across the state last week to see my siblings, as well as my aunt and cousins, who were back from Texas for a memorial service for my uncle, who passed away a couple months ago. It often seems like weddings or funerals that bring people together, who are miles apart and living in two different worlds. Its not always a good reason, but it does motivate people at times. A few weeks ago, I attended a 90th birthday party for my father’s cousin, and I met some relatives there for the first time, and it was a fun celebration. Its becoming less popular than when I was a child, but family reunions were always a good reason to eat and catch up with extended family you don’t normally see. What reasons do you try to find to get together with old friends or family you haven’t kept up with?
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, Ecclesiastes 3:1-2
If you are like me, often if things are out of sight, they are not foremost on your mind. If someone is not in your normal social or family circle of contact, you don’t usually think of them to call or catch up that often. Has God ever put some of these people on your heart randomly? If so, what was your response? I’ve found that when these folks pop up in my mind, there is one simple thing you can do, and that is pray for them. It doesn’t take much time or effort scheduling, but just to do it immediately when you think of them. Secondly, you can call or send a text or email just to check in to see how they have been. Rarely has anyone ever been offended by me asking how they were doing, even if their response was just ‘Fair to Midland.’ Often, it starts up a conversation that has been long overdue and provides avenues to bless them with words or actions. If there is someone you have been meaning to check-in on, do it today and you may be surprised by the results.
Yours in Christ,