Thursday, October 17, 2013


My mother-in-law and sister-in-law stopped by yesterday morning, a little before noon. "Thought we'd stop by and interrupt your schoolwork!" Grammy laughed. But they weren't interrupting - they were adding richness to our Wednesday.

It is a wonderful thing to live so close to extended family. Although I originally balked at the idea of moving back to the farm, right next door to my husband's parents, I have long since grown to understand what a blessing it is to have Grammy and Granddaddy for neighbors. Despite occasional friction or miscommunication, they have loved us and have graciously enfolded us into their daily lives.

Then there is the larger family, the one "out there." My sisters and brothers at Grace, in the community, south in Lauderdale and Shelby counties, East Tennessee, the family that is called the church. Are we all alike? Do we always agree? Are our relationships completely free of irritation or strife? Nope, but we are family none-the-less, and it is good to be together, to be part of the community of believers. These people do not "interrupt" my life - they make it richer.

Just within my own household, I am amazed at the diversity of personalities, gifts, temperaments, interests, and preferences. Expressive, emotive types. Serious, studious types. Flighty, fanciful types. Some are LOUD, and some are rather quiet. Some are animated, and some are demure. And one hormonal middle-age woman thrown in for good measure.

Do we get on each other's nerves occasionally? Absolutely. Do we sometimes offend one another, or take each other for granted? Yes. But we're still here, together, because we are family. We all have a lot to learn from one another.

I am so glad that God, in His wisdom, didn't plant me in a community of people just like myself. I think life with a bunch of Me's would quickly grow stagnant, stale, stinky. And I think that, very quickly, I would grow exceedingly sick of myself!

How much more wonderful to live in the midst of so much light and color and energy and variety! So much to learn, so much to glean, so much to treasure.

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