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Hey Patrick, It's Grandpa...

I don’t answer phone calls from numbers I don’t recognize. I figure if it’s important they’ll leave a message, and I can return it as soon as I’m able.

The last couple of weeks I’ve gotten a series of calls from Branson, Missouri. I don’t know anyone in Branson, so I didn’t answer. I assumed it was a telemarketer.

But the other night, the caller left a message.

“Hey Patrick. It’s Grandpa. I just wanted to see how you were doing. I miss you. Call me when you can. I love you. Bye.”

I called back.

The same sweet voice that left the message on my phone answered my call.

I explained who I was and told him that, unfortunately, this was not Patrick’s number.

“Oh, thank you so much for calling, sweetie,” he said. “I was so worried that he was just too busy to talk to me anymore.”

That broke my heart.

And it convicted me.

I’ve lost most of my grandparents. But I still have parents. Siblings. Nieces and nephews. Aunts and uncles. Cousins. Friends.

I’m ashamed to admit I’ve often been “too busy” for the relationships that I say matter most to me.

I don’t want the people I love to ever feel like I’m too busy to talk to them.

No, I won’t always be able to shoot the breeze. No, I can’t always interrupt my day just to chat.

I have to have boundaries in order to do what God has called me to do. I’m not suggesting you welcome every interruption to your day. I know I can’t.

But I want to be available for relationship. I want to know how the people I love are doing. I want to be there when they need me.

Patrick didn’t know his Grandpa was trying to call.

But don’t be too busy to take that call when you get it.

And - I’m speaking more to myself than anyone here - don’t be too busy to pick up the phone and call the people you love.

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