Throughout the years our family has grown like the morning glories that stretch across my front entryway, tenderly reaching out to the dark places and endeavoring to bring God’s beauty into the lives of others. We have a knack for giving those around us a sense of belonging, a safe haven within our little family unit.
Life never slows down for a family our size and the week my eldest came to visit was no different. It was lovely having my all of my children together under one roof for the first time in over 3 years. We were able to catch a movie and eat at a couple of our favorite little fast food places despite the fact that I had been recovering from the pneumonia.
We are a vivacious group, lively in conversation, thoroughly enjoying one another’s uniqueness and often forgetting that the world continues to move along with or without us. Life is good and family makes it ever so much sweeter.
But life is not so sweet for some. There are many who do not enjoy the sense of belonging that only God can bring through family life. Lonely faces and desperate souls move among us daily, and we seldom even notice it.
God places the lonely in families~Psalm 68:6
No matter where we find ourselves, we always pray before we eat a meal. I think growing up on the mission field has given us all a deep sense of gratitude for every meal we are blessed to receive. We had all sat down to a yummy meal at the local What-A-Burger when the young girl came upon us. We reached for each other’s hands and bowed our heads to pray. She stopped suddenly and whispered, ‘oh I am sorry,’ and then to our amazement she put down the condiment tray she had been carrying and asked if she could pray with us. Heaven touched earth as we joyfully took her hands in ours and thanked God for the food, family and fellowship. As we finished our prayer, she brushed a tear from her face as I kissed her hand and told her how very special she was.
Though we may not realize how important it is to feel that we belong and we often take it for granted, others may not be so fortunate. While we may overlook those lonely people in the hectic fast food joints of life, God never overlooks, and He never fails to see those weeping hearts and aching souls that yearn for belonging and family. Lord, help our hearts to always be loving, and our eyes and arms to always be open to receive the restless wanderers you bring into the circle of our embrace.