The Mum and Dad and Four Children
Once upon a time there was a family. There was a Mum and a Dad, three girls and one boy. This family was very happy living together. They would go to church each Sunday and visit their Grandma for lunch in Wollongong. The Dad worked hard and always spent time playing with the children. The Mum was very clever and did lots of things to help people. Life was good for this little family. They were 6 people altogether.
The Mum and Dad grew older and the four children grew up and got married. So now there was 10 people altogether. They all loved each other very much and they had lots of happy times together.
Pretty soon the children started to have children of their own and soon the number of people grew to 25. They all loved to spend time together at Christmas and Birthday Parties and Baptisms (there were lots of Baptisms) and Confirmations and any special event that was happening. They would even go to each other’s houses and have dinner just because they liked to be together. And when they were all together, they all had such a happy time.
You would have thought that 25 people was quite a crowd but they all had friends that they loved and so would invite them to come to the gatherings as well so the house was always very busy and noisy and lots of fun.
Just some of the family
Now as it happens, the children of the children grew up and found partners of their own and so the family grew to 39. It became a little harder to get together because there were so many people and not everyone could be there at the same time but this growing family still tried as hard as they could to keep having their times together.
Eventually, some of the children of the children had babies and the number grew to 44. Wow, that’s a lot of people! It was rather crowded when they had their get togethers but they didn’t care and everyone talked and yelled and laughed and the children of the children's children ran and played and squealed and sang and everyone was just happy to be together.
Many years passed and then one day the Mum became very sick and soon she passed away. The family were very, very sad but they continued getting together because they knew the Mum would be happy about that and they were happy being together.
Some time later, the Dad, who had stopped thinking because he missed the Mum so much, got very sick and he died also. This made the family very, very sad again and so they knew they had to be together to help each other feel better.
But, it became very hard to all be together so often. The children were all busy with work and life and church and looking after their houses. The children of the children were busy with work and life and church and looking after their houses and bringing up their little children, so not everyone could be at all the parties but still they got together as often as they could because they loved being together.
Some of the children's children and friends
Soon, some of the children of the children needed to move away from the family to do their jobs and so there wasn’t as many people at all the parties anymore and this made the family feel sad.
Time went by and the children grew older and the children of the children grew older and their children grew bigger and bigger and life became very busy and so the family didn’t spend as much time together as they used to, but when they did, they still had lots and lots of fun.
Then one day, a horrible thing happened. One of the children died. Just like that! She was gone and once again the family were very, very sad. It just didn’t seem fair and everyone wanted it not to be so.
And then, who could believe it? Another one of the children died and suddenly the sadness was too big and it was hard to think about having fun for a while.
Life seemed to go from being lots of fun to really sad so quickly. Things were changing so much for this family that once, was so happy just to be together.
Soon, they didn't see each other so much. They still loved each other and would like to be together, but, life, you know, is very busy and well, there just doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day to spend having fun with the family. There’s the kids to look after and work to be done and friends to see, and it takes time to stop and ring each other to see if they're ok or write each other or visit each other and well, it’s not that they don’t want to, it’s just, well……
But, maybe that’s as it should be as each family member lived out his or her life the way the Lord had planned it.
The two children knew that Families are precious gifts from the Lord and they were so grateful to have been blessed with a family that was so close for so long, especially in a world where there was so much conflict and brokenness amongst families. What they had was so special and they cherished every precious memory. They knew it hadn’t ended, just changed. But still, the sadness lingered and they thought it would be so nice, if it could be just like it was once more.
They knew it couldn’t though because, well, it just couldn’t!
|Another happy Christmas|
The moral of the story: It’s great to have a big happy family. It’s fun to spend time together and to help each other and to care about each other. But it takes time. It takes effort. It takes sacrifice. It takes commitment. It takes a sense of connection and every member doing their part to keep the family together. Don't forget to cherish your family.