Grand Memories!

We recently had three grandsons for two nights and three days. Their parents and older sister were out of state visiting on a college tour. Although everyone lives nearby,  their busy schedules and ours as well don’t allow for as much one on one time with these guys that we all would like. Our “number one” in this family officially becomes a teenager on Friday of this week and he’s excited about that! His closest aged brother turned ten in January and their little brother is going to be eight in May.

Adventure at the Pond!
A Teenager's Homemade Crossbow!

These are good boys who have had spiritual training since their birth. They are disciplined and becoming more independent these days. The family responsibility chart on their hall wall tells the story of accountability and partnership in household chores. They are polite and engaging when interacting with adults. Their parents are huggers and openly affectionate. It is not surprising that these brothers love, respect, and look out for each other. They are emerging leaders on the family team!

Mealtime was extra fun! It has been a while since we have had all the chairs occupied around our family table! Scrambled eggs, our favorite donuts with juice and a fruit plate of bananas, strawberries and blueberries were a sample of our breakfast of champions. Chili with Fritos (a Texas staple!) along with grilled-cheese tortillas with sides of dill pickles and all the orange soda you can drink made a perfect lunch.

Then, what would movie night be without a takeout pepperoni pizza from the local pie factory?! It got a little rowdy at times especially when Captain America was dealing with the bad guys! But a good time was had by all! Mimi and Poppi would retire at our usual hour and the guys would play on their devices a couple of more hours before seeing themselves off to bed. I don’t remember parenting back in the day being this easy or this much fun!

I am proud to be a shamelessly bragging and doting grandparent these days. God has gifted us with twelve perfect grandchildren! We love grand-time and building memories! I don’t know if the kids go home replaying the good times, but we grandparents do! We love remembering how when junior found out there was a nominal charge to rent the movie. He disappeared for a minute only to return with a five-dollar bill to cover the cost! Of course, I sent him packing back to his wallet and said, “The retirees will cover it this time!” 😊

How are you celebrating family these days? Are you building memories that can last a lifetime? The disciples were like a close-knit family. I often think about how they would return to base from an exciting time of being with Jesus and then rehearsed and replayed the experiences. There were so many  stirring times of teaching, spectacular miracles, faith-building dominance of nature, and who could forget the eager response of the crowds of followers. Those early months of traveling in and around Galilee were such good times!

Matthew records a miraculous feeding and a walk on the water in one of his most epic chapters. The response by the crowds was electrifying. “On return, they breached the boat at Gennesaret. When the people got wind that he was back, they sent out word through the neighborhood and rounded up all the sick, who asked for permission to touch the edge of his coat. And whoever touched him was healed.” (Mt. 14:34-36, The Message).

I think the most memorable response to the experiences recorded in this chapter though was given by the disciples themselves after Peter and Jesus climbed into the vessel. “The disciples in the boat, having watched the whole thing, worshiped Jesus, saying, ‘This is it! You are God’s Son for sure!’” (Mt. 14:33). If they found the walk on the water and calming of the seas to be astounding, what will they say on the third day after his death on the cross? The testimony from the angels at the empty tomb, “He is not here. He is risen!” must have had them buzzing among themselves!

This Lord’s Day, believers throughout the world will be buzzing with delight to affirm this traditional Easter greeting, “He is risen! He is risen, indeed!”

Mike Keppler, retired pastor,

active churchman and
doting grandparent.




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