My home was bursting at the seams yesterday. My family poured through the back door. They brought casserole dishes and pumpkin dessert as the baby girls and dogs darted about playing.
It was loud.
It was messy.
And it was oh so perfect.
My home was full, but this momma’s heart was overflowing with gratitude.
Sometimes everyone can come home for the holidays, but other times we miss a few. Each year we miss Terry’s parents who we will not see again until heaven. But this year, I paused to soak in the people that were around me. I listened intensely. I observe carefully. I savored each one in my tribe because people matter.
Not my house; not my display, not even the food. My people matter more than my presentation. Sometimes I can easily get distracted by ‘much serving’ when I need to be soaking in the blessings. It is a simple truth but easy for me to ignore as I prepared the turkey and the trimmings.
Can you relate?
There was a woman in the Bible who missed enjoying the loved ones around her. She was overwhelmed by her tasks. She lost the opportunity to sit with her guest of the day, Jesus Christ, in human flesh because she was too distracted.
Luke 10:38-40 reads, “Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving.”
I don’t often get it right, but yesterday I chose to be Mary. I played with my grandbabies, listened to my adult children and celebrated with my parents. I decided to play catch phrase and take walks in the field. I used paper plates instead of the good china. I decided to prep the night before. I chose to leave off some dishes.
I chose to breathe in my people and let go of distractions. I remembered to whisper thanks to my heavenly Father for my biggest blessings . . . My tribe of messy, imperfection yet somehow beautifully perfect gifts whom I love deeply.
With fresh eyes, my favorite moments were not about the turkey. It was not about my new thanksgiving wreath or centerpieces. It was not whether or not my house was clean. But it was in the priceless memories made with the ones I love.
These memories are worth documenting. These special moments include: Olivia’s asking me to help put “bling” on her horsey because every horsey needs bling at Thanksgiving. 🙂
My oldest son asked for a picture with his mom:
Sharing a 56-year-old tradition of homemade yeast rolls, now passed down to the fourth generation:
Another Thanksgiving with my ‘miracle daddy’ whom doctors said, ‘had a 10 percent chance to live’ two years ago:
A man-child who left home early to follow his God-given plan:
Brothers connected with no words needed:
Family members who love family as much as I do.
Recently, I have been reminded of the preciousness of life as I’ve walked with close friends. Some friends are facing their first Thanksgiving without a loved one, others have adjusted to “a new normal” for years now. But each would share that a heart of gratitude to God and love for family are the things that matter.
My friends, whatever your Thanksgiving weekend looks like and even as we plan for the Christmas holidays, there is much beauty in not getting distracted or overwhelmed. Life is not perfect. So let’s stop pretending we can be perfect. Instead, let go of distractions and hold tightly to loved ones.
From my messy and imperfect tribe to yours, Happy Friday!