“What do we do with all of these cards?” I wonder each year as I’m putting away our Christmas decorations.
Beautiful faces of those I love stare back at me; I can’t bear to see them in the trash.
Faces who have walked through life with me. Who have held my hand when I couldn’t stop the tears. Who have shared a glass of wine and gut-wrenching giggles with me when I needed it the most. Who accept me for who I am right at the moment – no more, no less.
I love them.
And what do we do for the people we love?
Yes. We pray for them.
This year, the cards are not going into the circular file. They are in a sweet little basket on our kitchen table. The one with the wax droplets, a stain of glitter glue, a deep scratch in the wood.
The one that is used abundantly; where our family gathers. Where we pray and break bread – together.
Each day, we draw a card out of the basket. We introduce the smiling faces to our children – friends from college who we adore but live far away and my children don’t have the privilege of really knowing. We look on our United States map to see where they now reside and reflect on how far they are from Indiana – where this conversation is taking place on a cold, January morning.
We look at the faces of the children and we talk about their ages. We love to compare how much older and younger everyone is from us. (Mommy and Daddy are exempt from this part…)
Their picture is placed on the cross in the center of the table and then.
We pray for their health. Their peace. That the new year will be one of joy and that when and if the joy is lost, they will feel God’s hands holding them firmly in His palms. We pray that they will all grow deeper in their love for Him, that they will serve those around them, that their hearts will be ignited to change the world – one little piece at a time. *
Days later, they will weave into a conversation.
“Mama, isn’t Calfoonya where Etta used to live and now she lives is Azona?” asks Sawyer.
“AIR-I-ZONA, Sawyer” chides his older sister.
“Yeah, mama. Arizona,” he corrects.
Though we can’t see them every day or even within the year, our children learn more about their parents through meeting those they love and are loved by from a life that existed before they were even a twinkle.
Have you ever been in a group that consistently prayed together? If so, then you know what happens to that group – they become incredibly linked, bonded, united. They learn the inner-workings of the hearts that are sharing words with God.
The group that we pray with can be our own family and it’s in praying for others and each other that will link. Bond. Unite.
Sharing our words with God together as a family? Yes, we’ll keep the cards this year.
* In this day of Facebook, Twitter, email, voice-dialing and smoke signals, I can easily take a moment to share that they were prayed over and the response to this has been on of gratitude. It’s nice to know you are being thought of in our busy culture, no?
Would you like us to pray for you? We would be honored. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me your name and particular prayer concerns. You can also email us a family photo should you choose!
I’m joining Kristen from We Are THAT Family for “Works for Me Wednesday” and Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience for “Walk With Him Wednesday”. Bless yourself today and visit the others who have done the same.