<b>By Guinn Sweet</b><br><a href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org">email@example.com</a>
“It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sin praises unto thy name, O most high.” – (Psalm 92:1 KJV)
There are two “really big” family get-together days in our family – Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. These are made precious, first because of their innate meaning and secondly, for their bringing our family together more closely when our hearts are softened by their intent.
It used to be that we brought all the kids and their families together at our house for both of these celebrations. Since our home is too small now to hold all of that, we have farmed them out to the kids’ homes. As we do this, we don’t usually all meet together on one particular day.
For instance, one of the older granddaughters invited all of her siblings and their children to her home this year. We were invited, too, but we had previously been asked, and had accepted, our middle daughter’s invitation to meet with her and her son’s family. In a way it is sad that we are splitting up like this, but the volume of the offspring dictates that we must begin doing this more and more.
Colon and I sat down recently and began to count the members of our family, including the children, grandchildren, all their mates and their children and grandchildren, which includes one great-great-granddaughter (appropriately) named Hope.
We were astounded that from the beginning of two ignorant young people, in 1945, to the present date, we have become 41, if we count Elaine’s fiancé, and we must because he joined us for the day of thanksgiving including eating, getting acquainted and becoming a member of the “young ‘uns” of whatever age.
Included in this number are three young men who are the brothers of a granddaughter-in-law, who were dropped at the home of her and our grandson while they were newlyweds in their late teens. Those two “kids” reared and educated them to become nearly grown, functioning young adults whom we are pleased to include in our family.
The realization of our having added 39 members to our original family has brought some sobering thoughts to our minds, some feeling of responsibility for their ongoing spiritual understanding and our creating a special image of the life and behavior of older Christian folks. When we taught and played “42” with them, I had to remember not to poke fun at Colon when he played the wrong domino and he had to remain straight-faced when I overbid my hand and he and his partner made me go “set.” Now, I know you diehard 42 players understand how hard it is to keep your cool while these things are going on, and how difficult it is to either lose or win, depending on which you have just done on the last game.
Things like this creep up on one silently and quickly sometimes. When it does, you just simply quit the game with a smile and join those who are watching “the” game on TV. Of course, this brings up another set of problems when you don’t all support the same team. It is very difficult to watch unperturbed while your team is falling behind in the scoring while you are developing gas from overeating. And if the crowd is large, there are bodies, feet and arms in the viewing area, all waving, stepping and making room on the couch for a better view of the loss of your favorite team. When all of that happens, the best thing to do is just go to another room, ruminate on the day and what a great thing it is to have had all you can eat prepared and served without any input from you whatsoever. That is the benefit of starting the whole thing off more than 64 years in the past.
Colon and I have more to be thankful for than we can ever think to name, but a few of those include our family, our health, our church, our friends, each other, our home, our sufficient income, our memories, good things past and good things to come, lessons learned and lessons taught, gifts we can give and gifts we receive, places yet to go and fishing yet to do, and so on and so on. More that we can ever deserve, but all that we can and do enjoy.
Thank you Lord, for showing “forth thy loving-kindness in the morning, and thy faithfulness every night."