With the arrival of the Winter Solstice on Wednesday, and Christmas this coming weekend, I step away from work and think about my late father-in-law, a man who was born on the farm where he lived for 94 years before his passing away earlier this year. Often, when we would visit around the holidays, he would share with me that on the morning of the Spring or Winter Solstice, he liked to go outside and watch the sunrise and later the sun set. He knew exactly where to look for each event given his deep connection to living on the same piece of land his entire life. Trees would grow and some would fall. Barns would be built and others would be taken down. Horses transitioned to tractors. The party line phone in the house transitioned to cell phones. But through it all, each winter and spring the sun would rise and the sun would set in the exact same pot.
He and I often talked about finding continuity in the midst of all the changes that happens in one’s life. And I realized recently, that for him and for my mother-in-law, the most powerful line of continuity was the creation of a loving family environment where everyone was welcomed and everyone was accepted just as they were. No judgements, no criticism - just unconditional love.
My hope for you and your family is that you can find or build that this week and for years to come. The sun will rise and the sun will set each day, but the love of family and community has the potential to transform the world.
During this holiday season, I hope you can discover in your heart the peace and love that transcends all things and embraces all things.
Many blessings to you and yours this week.