big family gatherings are hard for our family. i am the oldest of the three gromko girls. tim is the younger of the two lewis boys. we all grew up in a church three times a week world. we all went to the same conservative christian college and we all married people from the exact same churchy world and the exact same college.
so if you do the math, our family is made up of 4 parents of 8 grown children who all grew up the same way and went to the same college. we 8 grown children are aunties and uncles to 9 nieces and nephews.
this is where our similarities end.
some of us see the world we come from as the problem.
some of us see the world we come from as the solution.
this makes family holidays like the 4th of july tricky. we disagree about BIG STUFF like God, religion, politics, parenting, education... polite conversation over hamburgers and hot dogs is challenging. there are no safe subjects.
well our brother-in-law from ohio solved the problem. he found the perfect little lake cabin very close to the rest of our family in north carolina. he and my sister rented the cabin and a boat for 4th of july week and invited us all to come and go as we pleased. i call the cabin "neutral territory"...
the view was spectacular
and the back porch beckoned...
so you can just sit in silence with the people you want to love better
and not worry about coming up with something safe to talk about...
or you can just call him "o captain! my captain!"...
and you guys...
peace on earth is possible
if you are going through hell, keep going
we have hurt each other deeply
we have said hateful things we can never unsay to each other at family dinners
we have broken each other's hearts
for those who grew up like we did and know what a sword drill is...
we are the prodigal son
we are the older brother
but this weekend at the little lake cabin that could...
we were all the father with open arms...
all together now...
they seemed perfectly happy to pose for one
mom makes the best whoopie pies in the whole wide world
they shook things up.
they knew that if you keep doing things the same way
you will keep getting the same results.
they wanted new results.
they wanted peace, love, happiness,
and a whole lot of fun.
so they chose to be the change they wish to see in our world.
they chose to treat our opinionated family how they want to be treated.
they gave us all a whole lot of fun.
they practiced Jesusy generosity.
you get what you give
whatever you think people are withholding from you…
and so on…
give it to them.
- eckhart tolle
(that's what they call me)