Today is one of those days I just need to write.
I met some of my family for the first time on Sunday. Without going through a long, drawn out explanation, it really wasn’t the first time, but it might as well have been. It was probably one of the largest sibling gatherings that I have seen, other than my grandpa dying. It was nice to visit with them without the death of our grandpa looming over our heads. Plus, I think I was 16 when that happened, so being a few years older helped. Nevertheless, the night was enjoyable. We ate a great meal that one of my sister’s made, played foosball with my nephews and brother, and got to talk about what has happened in the past ten years.
I didn’t grow up knowing some of my family. It’s not a choice that I made, nor do I think it’s any one person’s fault. But I feel that experience has skewed my view of what family looks like. That’s definitely an area where marriage has helped. I have been able to see and be apart of my own family, as well as see the inner workings of my wife’s family. Sure, every family has their quirks, but family is probably the quirkiest. But for about two hours, last Sunday night, I sat in a room with three sisters, one brother, one step sister (sort of), and at least five of my nieces and nephews.
After my wife and I left, I called my dad. Of the children he has raised I am probably the closest with him, and I wanted him to know what had occurred. My hope was that it would encourage him — that it would bring joy to his heart to hear of his children being together. I believe it did. His initial reaction was surprise, which then lead to realization. We talked again on Monday, and he was still in shock. He said he sat in his easy chair for a few hours after I called him that night and just thanked God for what had happened. Hopefully that gives you an idea of how big of a deal this was.
You see, I want to know my family, but I’m scared at times. Though these people have the same blood as me, I don’t know them anymore than I know the President of The United States. But the Lord has opened a door for me. In fact, it’s wide open and I feel like I just took a step in and looked around a bit. It still seems dark in this room. I can barely make out the faces, but I know they look familiar. Maybe if I step in all the way, and grab a flashlight I might be able to make contact with those dimly lit faces. Nevermind, just flip the light switch…