How many times have you thought… “That family is weird!?” Guess what… people think that about you and your family!
Last July 10, my dad passed away. Since then I’ve attended a number of other funerals with yesterday being one for my uncle on my mother’s side. Since the funeral… along with thinking about my dad’s family… I’ve reflected on what families are like. See if you can identify with a few thoughts (These include my mom, dad, and wife’s families).
Every family is dysfunctional… it’s just a matter of degree (Most of the time we either ignore the dysfunction or keep it a family secret. Virtually every family has been wounded by divorce, substance abuse, moral issues, and emotional problems… just for starters.). If your family doesn’t have a black sheep… that means YOU’RE IT (Surprise)! God puts us in a family to learn how to love difficult people (Uhhh… I’m not always the easiest person to love so I’m glad I have family!).
Now for a few thoughts gleaned from listening, observing, and thinking about my family ON THREE SIDES (Mom, Dad, Wife). Oh… I’m pretty sure these are universal AND (sadly) I’m guilty of a few of these.
Everyone thinks they know how others in their family OUGHT to behave… (Ouch).
There is usually one person and/or sub-family that is the glue that holds the rest of the family together. They also tend to be very people and relational oriented. Thank God for these people!
Everyone thinks they know what would fix problems other family members have… (Ouch #2).
There are family members who are peace keepers and peace makers. God bless them!
Many think they are doing better than others in the family in select areas… (Ouch #3).
There are usually several family members who do as much as they can to help other family members who are struggling and having a tough time. They will be rewarded by God!
There is usually at least one outcast (By their own choice, not by family decree).
Everyone has secrets they think are hidden, that the family talks about out of concern (NOTE: If someone will talk to you about someone else, they will talk to someone else about you!)
There always seems to be one that is by default the patriarch or matriarch… everyone defers to them on family decisions (I’m thankful for that person!).
There always seems to be someone that is just plain pushing the envelope on one or more issues…
There are usually one or two that are at odds with each other but are civil at family gatherings. Everyone else in the family wishes they make amends…
The main thing every person in the family wants is to be loved and accepted by the rest of the family!
No family is perfect… they all have dysfunction because you and I are in them. We didn’t choose our family and they didn’t choose us, but we love them and hope they love us. Family is family. They are the ones who will stick by your side no matter your faults, oddities, or mistakes… and we do the same for them.
So as for me, I’m thankful to God for my family members… ALL of them! I wouldn’t choose any other one to have. Each Uncle, Aunt, cousin, and In-law is special to me for many different reasons. This I know, if there was a perfect family… I couldn’t be in it!
Thank you God for the Turley, Ethridge, Britton, and Brown families that I have been blessed to be a part of!
Well said my friend! Great insights on the dynamics of family! I saw all of your points in my own family too! Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow at CrossPoint! Grace and Peace my brother!
Wonderful!!!! I just returned from a week in Colordao, and how happy I am to be back in Alabama with my precious small family..regardless of their “family” status!! My parents were the backbone of my family, and my daughter, her family and myself were so very blessed to have had them in our lives. No one is perfect, but once that person is no longer with you, I think it is wonderful to reflect on all of the memories that were made while growing up. I am blessed beyond measure. I miss Mom and Dad every single day, but knowing they are in heaven and no longer suffering is a tremendous blessing in itself. Yes, I still daily shed tears over the loss of my mom, but knowing I will be with her again takes many tears away.
Ron, this is good; however, if you want to be loved and accepted by your family, then you have to extend it yourself. It is not a one way street. We have one in our family that is most difficult to get along with; very critical of others, know it all but in order for others to love them, they have to have deep down love themselves and this is not going to happen. Remember the e-mail I sent a few days ago ‘LET IT GO” so very true. Missed you yesterday. Lunch was wonderful.
Actually Tiny… I missed being there too! As for the post, most all the thoughts were about my dad’s family with a few sprinkled in from my mom’s. I guess now if anyone reads the post and then the comments, they’ll know a little more behind the story. As for what you sent me last week… yeah… I remember it. Thanks!
Were you peeking in at my family last Christmas?