[Elizabeth said,] “And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me? For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her by the Lord.” … And Mary remained with her about three months and then returned to her home. Luke 1:43-45, 56 (New Revised Standard Version)
My folks moved to Kentucky away from our extended family before I was born. Even though, we did not live close, spending time with family was essential. Every year, we traveled by car at least twice, summer and Christmas to see family.
Time spent in the car on these trips taught me the importance of uninterrupted presence. My dad and I would talk for hours about faith, life, family, hopes, and dreams. Sometimes mom would read aloud. Other times, we would get lost in our thoughts.
Our trips gave me a fresh perspective, a time away from routines, and an opportunity to remember the most important things in life: faith, family, and presence.
Now that I have teenagers of my own, we travel to see family, spend time together, and enjoy uninterrupted time. The travel allows me to listen carefully, ask questions, share life, and have fun with them. These times can never be taken away or replaced; they are and will be memories to cherish.
Mary understood the value of traveling to visit with family. Sharing precious moments with loved ones during transition times, she traveled while newly pregnant to visit her cousin, Elizabeth, so they could enjoy time together as they both were expecting babies who would break into this world with new life, not only for them, but for us!
Prayer: God, join us with your presence this season, as we gather with our loved ones. Remind us, again, how important presence versus presents is for us as we wait for your son to break into the world. Amen.
Wondering While Waiting: How does spending time with those who care about you impact your life?
Joy – Inspire. Ignite. Invite.
Bethel Lutheran Church, Gary, IN