“Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.” Psalm 90:1-2
We are newly returned from a week of “Grandmapa Camp” with our kids and grandkids at the Oregon coast. The setting was beautiful and the company the best. I was concerned going into the week that absence would shroud our time as we all missed Becky. Instead, at least for me, it seemed that the week was all about presence . . . about family and permanence and the shaping of lives and the creating of memories that will continue to define family when Steve and I are gone.
We were very aware of missing Becky and there were individual times of quiet and tears. But even more were the times of remembering, of telling stories, of noting resemblances to Becky, the sharing of things past and the affirming of her continued participation in family today. Becky wasn’t the only family member missed – we missed Jacob and Christopher too! But they were present in the missing and in the impact of their love and lives on the children.
In subtle and not so subtle ways I can see in myself the legacy of the generations that came before me. I see my Mom and Dad at times – even in phrases passed down to my grandchildren – for instance “When it’s gone, it’s gone!” I see my grandmothers and grandfathers in various food preferences, phrases and natural bents that rise in me. In some vague but real way I am a collage of the men and women of the generations that came before me. And I see that same dynamic at work in the children of my children.
They are a lovely blend of the families from whence they’ve come. What a joy to see this truth result in these resilient and beautiful young people.
Are we perfect? Not by a long shot. But our lives are built upon the perfect character and life of the Lord our God who brought the world into existence and began the legacy of man. I saw His love and transforming care at work this week in us. I saw His comfort and encouragement expressed through each of us into the lives of one another. I saw a family,
united in love, overcoming grief, growing together toward the next generation all in the compassing presence of the everlasting God. Praise Him!
“Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Psalm 90:12