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Traveling with purpose

Our daughter and son-in-law were flying in early Thanksgiving morning. Information from our daughter and the airport website didn’t mesh real well --- a Delta from Atlanta was due in at 8:39 but had been delayed. Another was scheduled to arrive sometime after 10:00. Our daughter had said they were supposed to land about 9:00 so . . . ? I decided to play it safe and head to the airport early. It was a good decision. They ended up getting in about 9:00, but watching the other people who were waiting for their loved ones to arrive more than made up for being there ahead of time.

Because it was Thanksgiving, not many people were traveling for business reasons. Everyone was flying somewhere to see someone they loved. The airport wasn’t very crowded and most people seemed to be in a mellow holiday mood. That said, there was still a definite sense of anticipation and expectation on their faces and in their body language.

I tried to guess who the different people there were waiting for. There was a lady with auburn colored hair waiting for what turned out to be (I think), her mother and father (I had guessed a boyfriend or husband). There was a man waiting for a woman who was obviously his significant other. There were three generations of ladies (a little girl, her mother and grandmother). They were waiting on what must have been the little girl’s father because when he showed up, she wrapped her arms around his waist, her face flushed and full of happiness. It was obvious he meant a lot to her. My favorite was the family of five, a mother, three daughters and a son. The oldest girl was maybe ten and the rest stair-stepped down to the boy, who looked to be about four or five. When dad arrived, he ran and wrapped himself around his legs and wouldn’t let go. Dad somehow managed to keep walking and the little girls all went into a titter over what their little brother was doing. It was all good stuff. Then my daughter and son-in-law arrived. She gave me a little wave and it was my turn to get excited.

It made me think about what it will be like one day when we’re reunited with loved ones who have gone on before us. I guess as you get on in life and experience the death of more and more people you know and love, your start to think more and more in this manner. Anyway, I thought about how great it will be if those who have gone on before are waiting to greet us like the people at the airport were waiting to greet their loved ones. There is no joy on earth that compares to the joy of that reunion.

I also thought about those who were traveling --- my daughter, son-in-law, and everyone one else that day. They weren’t just traveling to travel (i.e., tourists sightseeing), they were all journeying with purpose. They had risen much earlier in the morning than they were used to in order to reach a destination where there were loved ones waiting for them.

As we look forward to the grand family reunion our Father has planned for us, may we travel with purpose on this earth. We’re not here for long, but we’re here for a reason. Let’s not get bogged down with too much baggage or be too frantic over departure times. Let’s live life as it is given and live it for the Giver.
Travel well.
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