The holidays always bring feelings of family to the surface–bad or good. Usually an interesting mix of both. We long for people to smile when we walk through the door, to welcome us with open arms, to feel that we have been missed and are treasured.
One of my clients calls it longing for a Norman Rockwell family. She always has a hard time this time of year–because her family is so broken despite their wealth. And the saddest part is they can’t look at it and admit it. So, of course, they can’t get better. Drives her crazy!
Thanksgiving is often interesting for us–all of our kids live in different states, so we are often alone. But we are so fortunate that we have become close to friends who are our kids’ ages. This year one of them had a Thanksgiving dinner and included us.
How sweet it was. We did get the smiles, open arms, and the feeling that we are treasured. It was a great evening with people who have the same desires and values actually sharing thanks for spouses and each other. And some of it was just spontaneous.
It started me thinking: If you are blessed to have family like that, how happy you are! BUT if you don’t and you long for it, or are far away from yours, what prevents you from creating a surrogate one? I’ve had one most of my life just because from 22 on I lived 2000 miles from family. I asked, and God supplied.
We need people. We need to feel loved and treasured. It truly is God’s biggest desire for us. One Thanksgiving I purposely spent alone with Jesus imagining Him with me. It was fabulous. God wants to be that real to you. That close.
You’ll never be sorry for making Him the primary relationship in your life, and He will add surrogate family–other people who have put Him first on purpose. These are people who know how to love, or at least are learning. They aren’t perfect, but they are in God’s school for love.