As I sit to compose a posting for this blog site today, I am filled with many, many emotions.  I have spent today with my aged mother, three sisters, and a brother.  You might ask, “What’s so strange about that?”  Well, for starters, the last time that we were all together in one room was 33 years ago.  And though many things have changed (weight, hair color, etc.) many things remain the same.  Several dynamics, beyond the fact that we are spread from California to Massachusetts, make our family unique.

When my father and mother married, my father had been married and had two children, ages 5 & 7.  Soon after they were married they had two more children, two years apart, then after a six-year hiatus, I was born, then my youngest sister two years later.  So, between the youngest and the oldest there is 16 years, with each sibling paring with the one closet to their age.  As a result, we all grew up in a very different family dynamic, which included my oldest brother dying at age 21, when I was just 7.

As we were growing up, my father was a hired man on a farm.  With eight mouths to feed and eight children to clothe, there were some very lean times.  By the time my youngest sister and I were in junior high school my father was farming for himself and our family’s financial situation improved greatly, which allowed my sister and me to enjoy so benefits that my older siblings never enjoyed.  So as you can see, it is as if we were all raised n a very different family even though we were all raised in the same one.

Though we have a last name in common and belong to the same aged mother, we have little else in common.  We all have children and grand-children that we have seldom seen, cousins who our own children do not even know.  That’s my family.

Though today has been a good day to renew old acquaintances, it is also a day that makes me appreciate ever more my family in Christ, the family that has filled many voids in my life and given me many other brothers and sisters when time and distance has separated me from my flesh and blood brothers and sisters.

Today, I am thankful for my family on every level.

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