A Century Celebrated

They carried to him all those afflicted
with various diseases and racked with pain:
the possessed, the lunatics, the paralyzed.
He cured them all.

Matthew 4:24

Yesterday, my husband and I traveled two hours to join his Aunt Mary for her 100th birthday celebration. I enjoyed the amazing fall colors which transformed this typically monotonous drive. While absorbing the beauty around me, poignant memories of many loved ones passed emerged. Though I am certain of their current bliss, the sting of their absence remains as well. As I made a mental list of those who would be absent from this celebration, memories of every sort and circumstance prompted tears.

Aunt Mary didn’t want a party on this particular birthday. Eventually, her persistent children convinced her to allow them to have cake and coffee for “a few people.” I guessed that Aunt Mary was also thinking about those who are no longer with us. Indeed, more of her family has passed away then remains. Still, as the afternoon unfolded, Aunt Mary was as gracious and appreciative as she could be. Somehow, those who were present to her filled the gaps in her heart for a little while. This time, tears of joy flowed.

Aunt Mary’s century-long life boasts joys and sorrows alike. Still, I think she agrees that every year has been worth it. All the while, the One who cured them all so long ago, has brought peace to Aunt Mary as well.

Loving God, bless Aunt Mary and all of those you have given her to love with your healing peace, today and always.

©2015 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

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