“Greetings! Dan and I just returned from vacation. We first drove to Kentucky to visit son Cole and his family. We had a lovely time, including great food, some especially delicious ice cream, warm weather, and (of course), grandson Lawrence “Larry”, age two.

From there we headed to South Carolina, spending a day/night in Charleston and Folly Beach. We walked around, soaked in the sights, sounds, and sun, plus had a great time!

We concluded our trip at daughter Lindsey’s house in SC, where she and fiancé Ryan took good care of us, spending time in Laurens, Simpsonville, and Greenville.

It breaks my heart every time I have to say good-bye to these people I love. There are few things in life I enjoy as much as spending time with my family – husband, children, and siblings; these are my most favorite people on the planet! Do we all get along all the time? Of course not. As human beings, we are selfish, short-sighted people, rarely willing to admit fault, and often struggling to forgive. Even – and maybe especially – family members.

The Easter story shows us even the disciples struggled with this, deserting Jesus in his time of need – even Peter denying Jesus three times.

We may think there’s no hope for us, if even the closest friends of Jesus couldn’t hold it together! Thankfully, there’s Easter – the resurrection of Jesus. Miraculous. The most loving, unselfish gift ever – EVER! Pure love, pure grace, offered to all, no strings attached. As we are afforded this amazing grace, so should we offer that grace to others – deserving or not – because, truly, none of us deserve this kind of extravagant love and grace.

While it was a lovely vacation, I was still anxious to get home…maybe too anxious. As we were driving home, I (apparently) was going a bit fast – subsequently being pulled over by one of Wisconsin’s finest State Patrols. He was a very pleasant young man and let me off with a warning. Thankfully, grace is offered in all kinds of situations!

No matter what highways and byways you’re traveling this week, may you enjoy God’s abundant blessings throughout!

Peace in Christ,
Pastor Julie