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The Pastor’s Pen

“A wise child makes a glad father, but a foolish child is a mother’s grief.” Proverbs 10:1-2

         Right now my house is as clean as it will ever be in the days ahead. You see, our pre-school grandkids arrive imminently, with their parents and a sibling on the way. The one yet to be born at the end of the year won’t stir things up much, except to disturb her mother’s sleep.

         We’ve borrowed all the requisite baby gear from other grandparents, who like us, live too far away from their beloved babies. The pack and play is all set up, without blankets so the baby doesn’t get it wrapped around his neck and choke to death in his sleep. The borrowed car seats have been daughter-in-law approved, as she asked us to send her a picture to make sure they were right.

         I gently reminded her that her husband, my son, spent the first four years of his life strapped in a car seat. I even managed to buckle it into the car without the assistance of a paramedic. I failed to mention that as a child I stood on the car seat next to my own mother who flung out her arm at every stop to prevent my tumbling to the floor.

         We’ll do what grandparents do when their little ones visit every other year. We’ll make a holiday of it, going to the library and the science museum, chase waves on the beach and visit the children’s museum. But mostly we’ll hang out together, build a fire and roast marshmallows, and create messy projects all over the house. I’m not so worried about the mess as imagining our dog Jazz with glitter on his nose and play dough stuck to his feet.

         I’ve worried about what to feed the children and I’ve been to the grocery store, twice. One thing I won’t have to worry about is that these children are as beloved as any on the planet, except yours of course. When they leave for the airport after church on Sunday, I’ll look around at the remains of their visit and weep, not for them, but for me. I’ll try not to have that sad, hang-dog face of my mother standing at the door pathetically waving as if she would never see us again. It’s hard when those we love live far away.

         Nevertheless, I know that nothing can separate us from the love of those united by blood and by faith. Like our relationship with one another in Christ, we live as people of hope anticipating that day of reconciliation when we will all be together again.

Lord of Life, thank you for the sweetness of time with those we love, and for your constant love and care for us whether we wander far from you or draw near. Amen

God’s grace, mercy and peace,

Pastor Anna V. Copeland