Is the worse of the pandemic over? It seems to be anyway, and we’re all anxious to get back out and shake it up. My church is back inside the walls of the sanctuary. We’re having Sunday morning services again; however, we’re not having the full array of ministry meetings (Sunday school, Bible studies, and missions.) we would normally have. These small group gatherings require a certain amount of intimacy that is still too risky for now. People are still getting sick with the latest variant of covid-19, even though the effects aren’t as catastrophic as back in 2020 and 2021.
My family’s first large gathering for this year was May 28, when a sizable number of us gathered for a ceremony to celebrate my baby sister and her husband’s thirty-fifth wedding anniversary. There was a rededication ceremony and a nice dinner afterwards. I must admit, it seemed a strange to gather for this. Folks were dressed to the nines, and everyone enjoyed the socializing that has been absent from our inventory of social skills for what seems far too long. After almost three weeks, I haven’t heard any reports of people who have gotten sick because of the event. Of course, my family is a bunch of law-abiding, rule following folks, who are concerned about the welfare of others. I would venture to say that we all had been vaccinated.
Chris and I have two other family gatherings on our calendar planned for this year. We’ll be traveling up to Jonesboro in the Northeastern part of the state, where my oldest child lives, along with a few of my cousins. One of my cousins has a nice spread just on the edge of town. The last gathering, he hosted was over the July Fourth holiday in 2019. It was a well-attended event with folks from five generations having the best fun anyone could have. There was more food than any of us could eat. I wrote about this in a blog titled Familial: Familial – oldblessedwordpresscom. That gray-headed lady (Aunt Mary) you see in the first picture has gone on to be with her Lord. She was the one person who represented the top of the fifth generation. This year, there’ll be four generations present. I’ll be the oldest of the fourth (in descending order). Lord, please have mercy on me; elderhood has crept up on me suddenly. That’s another sign of being old and blessed. The other gathering will be Chris’ family reunion, with folks coming from around the country to Little Rock over the Labor Day weekend in September. This group will also be absent two members, Chris’ twin sisters (Bobbie and Gloria). They made their journey to the other side since the last family reunion.
The pause in the fulness of life brought on by covid-19 wasn’t a pause at all. Now, that things are getting back to some form of normality, we’re seeing that life continued its accounting function as usual, making entries in both the credit and debit column. In a sense, there really wasn’t a pause.
May God bless your family gatherings for 2022 and beyond, hug the little ones, have good conversations with the ones in between, and take notes of the wisdom shared by the elders.
I’m old and blessed…hope you will be too.