Where were you living and what was was life like when you turned 21? It was 1971 for me…I was a rookie history teacher in North Carolina, then spent the summer in Scotland working with missionaries before starting graduate school.Here it is, 40 years later, and my baby just turned 21 yesterday. Do you remember how you celebrated your 21st birthday? Well, Joel and Stephen wereboth able to get the day off, so we started with a trip to the farmers’ market forjust the perfect (Hungarian) pastries and local berries to go with our coffee, andthen we headed off to the John Ball Zoo, a great favorite of ours. In fact,one of these days I’ll try to write a post on all the cutest zoo animals and theirantics, but this morning I’m feeling very nostalgic about the fact that all our kids have grown up, and I’ve been thinking about the similarities between Joel’s relationship with his older brother Stephen and my own youth 40 years ago.My sister Annie and I shared an apartment and were pretty much inseparable, teaching, traveling, and schooling together. In fact, when we got married a couple of years later (just four months apart), Alan remarked, “I sure hate to break up such a far out pair of old maids.” (I was 22, but who’s counting?) 🙂Joel & Stephen have been extremely close, particularly for the last several years.They’ve shared college and travel adventures together and have had all sorts of unique opportunities. At long last, they will begin to share their graduate school experiences. (Hopefully, they won’t be too hairy!)They’ve still got a long road ahead of them, but I feel confident that they’ll do just great, and I’m so glad they have each other as they journey on in the Light.It was a steamy 94° in the afternoon, so instead of a tennis match, Stephen and Joel read while I napped (rather crucial in order to go to bed and get up withAlan without feeling like a zombie by the evening), wrapped Joel’s presents, andput the finishing touches on Joel’s “Death by Chocolate” birthday cake. AfterAlan returned from work we had our dinner party, watched a video, and went for a swim by firefly light. It was a long and extremely happy day…a crowning joy tocelebrate our youngest becoming a bona fide adult just as Alan and I are becoming bona fide senior citizens! Thank you, Father, for my precious family!
“God sets the solitary in families: he brings out those which are bound with chains” (Pslam 68:6).