I’m taking a break from the news, for at least this one moment in time. Instead of writing about Jennifer’s coming out, or Bruce’s getting kicked out, I want to take a moment and talk about my family.
We’d all cleared our schedule for this past weekend because my oldest daughter is moving to Europe for two years and this was our time to celebrate being a family. We enjoyed some time together in the mountains. We ate steaks and smores, drank coffee and wine, talked about everything. We laughed a lot. We woke early on Saturday and hiked in the snow. We prayed together a couple of times, but neither my wife or I could finish a prayer without shedding a couple tears of gratitude for this remarkable gift of family that we enjoy. After more than 30 years, my wife and I are better friends than ever – more honest, quicker for forgive, and more at rest in the certainty of our love for each other. As if this weren’t enough, our kids love each other fiercely, and it was clear to me that they were savoring the moments of the weekend just as we were.
The picture of the ascent reminds me that the profound joy we realize when we’re together isn’t manufactured in a day or a week. Step by step– that’s what’s brought us this far. Confessions, frustrations, forgiveness, rebuildings, confrontations, restorations, homework, holidays, reading books in front of the woodstove, family devotions, music lessons, little league, high school plays, thousands and thousands of meals, many of them with guests at the table from all over the world, dishes, diapers, climbs together, nights out under the stars, trips to Colorado when the Elk are running through the National Park by thousands right outside our tent, playing music together, or tennis, reading CS Lewis together, home-school, Christian School, Public School, graduations, celebrations, funerals… If you ask me what shaped our children, I’d say all this and pages more because it really is “step by step” – day after familiar day – that shapes each of us and our families.
I also happen to believe that Jesus is at the center of it all, granting us the capacity to both forgive, confess, keep on the road, and love each other beyond our capacity. We’re already back into our various worlds as the new week begins – but with another step taken towards intimacy, as we celebrated our own life together, and the countless gifts we’ve enjoyed as a family.
I’ll write about the other stuff soon enough, but this stuff, this personal stuff is life giving and important to me. I hope it’s helpful to you in some small way. If you want the full photo show, click here.