I can still smell the lingering smoke in my hair from the bonfire. If I close my eyes, I almost see the full moon as it rushes behind the clouds; the fire is crackling nearby. It was a perfect way to end the day – sitting around the fire after a long day with family.
I’d just gone through photo albums the night before of the family reunion; many of them were from when I was just a baby. I wanted to soak in every memory I could while I was home. As I studied faces throughout the day and met the newest members of our family, one born just one week ago, it occurred to me the legacy of love that had been built over the last fifty years. Because of the love and commitment of two people, my Mom and Dad, this family was knit together – one thread at a time. There are five children, fifteen grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.
That’s how marriage works; you build your life together one thread at a time, like you are weaving together a masterpiece. The trials are the real tests in life; they build character; they test your faith. They sometimes break you down in order to build you up into something stronger. The road gets a little bumpy.
If you learn to hold on to each other, to support each other instead of turning on each other or placing blame on each other, this is where your masterpiece will start to take shape.
The question is, will you have just a few rows of thread started and then unravel all your hard work as you face trials in life?
As you navigate difficult trails in life and overcome things together, you learn new skills; as your family grows, your patience and perseverance increase. Each thread of life is woven together and intertwined. The difficulties faced together and the hard roads traveled only strengthen your bond until it becomes a lifetime of interlocking events and memories that create the generations I witnessed today.
I’m staying with my Dad and his wife, Joan, while I’m visiting. On the way home from the reunion, we made a detour. It was late, almost midnight, but it was an important detour. We drove through the cemetery to where my Mom is buried – the matriarch of this Legacy of Love. There is a rose bush near her gravestone and in it is perched a bird that stands guard over my Mom. She loved watching birds. He lights up at night. My Dad wanted to drive through the cemetery on the way home to see the bird lit up. I’m sure as we passed by, my Dad was thinking of the Legacy of Love and the lives that were created because of the trials he and Mom endured; the good times, the bad times, the endless memories, and the faith and trust in Christ that they raised their family to believe in. Where would this family be now if they had not clung to each other during difficult times?
As we drove home, I thought about the bird – a blue jay – lighting my Mom’s grave and the symbolism there. The blue jay mates for life. This bird is fiercely bold against its enemies, loyal, patient, faithful and vigilant.
My Mom was a strong Christian woman. She fiercely protected each of us and my father. She was a loyal companion.
This also describes Christ watching over our life. We all have a light to follow in this world – we just need to make the choice and open the door.
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12
Linking with these great blogs today.
Do you have a Legacy of Love to share? How do you keep your love and faith alive?