We had a get-together yesterday with one of my cousins and I'm in awe of how wonderful it felt to share time with her, her husband and her daughter. Cousins have a special connection. Their backgrounds are similar and you know their parents who have connections with your own. There are common family stories and memories that tie your hearts together for life. You love the same people and share a bond that doesn't weaken with time. You share the same grandma and grandpa. It's a special kinship.
Most cousins know you from childhood and watched you grow up and mature. You can't fool them; they know where you come from and where you're headed. They know what's behind you and what's before you. Time passes and the age differences don't matter anymore. Although you didn't play together in their parents' awesome playhouse, you remember it as if you could have.
It's sad when you lose touch with some cousins but it is such a blessing to keep the attachment with those you can. It takes effort and love and time to strengthen the bond. A handwritten letter, a quick email, a tag on a Facebook page or a phone call is all it takes. I'm so glad my grandchildren are growing up knowing each other and caring about their cousins. Families are a blessing.
"Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his family were baptized. The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God--he and his whole family" (Acts 16:32-34 NIV).