My cousin, Sandy Frampton, died on January 7. Sandy was only 49. She died after a return of cancer to her body. I was greatly encouraged at her funeral in Reynoldsville, PA, when the pastor of her home church related her conversion story, her baptism, and her unselfish service over the years both there as well as the church she attended near her work in Johnstown, PA. While her passing was untimely, at least from my perspective, her life was full of family and service for Christ.
For me, the loss was bitter sweet. I knew Sandy, but I'm afraid I didn't know her well enough. You see, over the years I've allowed my busy schedule to interfere with spending time with extended family. At the funeral I found myself being re-introduced to family members I hadn't seen in years - anywhere from 15 to 35 to be exact! For that, there was a profound sense of loss. My children have missed out on knowing much of their family due to neglect.
Let me encourage you to spend time with family. Go see your parents, your grandparents, your aunts, uncles, and cousins. Don't wait for a funeral to see them again. And if the miles are too great to see them in person, pick up the phone, write a letter, or even Skype. But don't let the years go by without connecting.