I was talking on the phone with one of my uncles today. He is so sweet and kind. So are all of my aunts, uncles, and cousins. At certain parts of my life I have been blessed to live in the same town as some of my extended family. At other times in the same town as my own parents and siblings. What strikes me is this. At those times, Sunday dinner, birthday celebrations, and other holidays were celebrated en masse. What renewing times those often were. I have often said that cousins are the original best friends. In looking over the years at my own cousins and my husbands cousins, I cannot recall a single disagreement. I can recall total acceptance. I recall feeling uplifted and encouraged. I feel the same way about my aunts and uncles. They all renew my heart and mind.
These days I do not live in the same town as any of them. Phone, letters, facebook, and text are the only way we connect. As a result, I feel far less renewed. Granted, there are always people who judge me and you. Life gives you no shortage of those. Some people just make you feel like you aren’t good enough or important enough. But then along comes a call with my uncle Ray, my uncle Jim, my sister-in-law Jayne, a text from various cousins a cool Pm from my brother, Mike, various messages from so many…. how can I not be restored, renewed, and rebuilt?
I am blessed so deeply. I have been messaging back and forth with a dear friend of mine. We have been girlfriends since we were young teens. She is in a health battle right now and oh my goodness do I wish I could dissolve the miles between us and cook for her and just be there beside her in this battle. Another friend is in a similar battle thousands of miles away as well. I want to lighten their loads. I want to help them renew and restore from afar. Prayer, texts, and the like are all I can give. Aren’t we blessed by technology at times?
Laughter and nature renew and restore me as well. Music, art, relaxation, cooking give me a boost. In this crazy year, we all need encouragement. So today I send you as much encouragement as I can muster. Be gentle with yourselves, precious readers.