I have no regrets about this life that has been clearly God-wrought and God-established and I know that these feelings have nothing to do with our children but more with the current rotundo stage of life I'm in and the Christian culture we live in, which, as a whole, is not welcoming to large families. I never thought we'd be "that" family, but here we are.
1.) Two weeks ago we went to a playgroup at a park where we were not the largest family and no one once asked, "how do you do it" or looked at me like I should be institutionalized.
2.) We have a lot of fans in DSS (department of social services).
3.) Last week two friends brought their children over while the mamas and I worked batches of peach jam and casserole dishes of peach cobbler.
4.) This morning another friend (newly Christian - woohoo!) texted a message to my phone about a playgroup at the park and can we *please* come.
I write these out to remind myself that I am not completely friendless and am surrounded by some incredible women, who don't mind making six extra p-butter and jelly sandwiches in addition to the two needed for their own children, or having a family of eight over for dinner or coming over to simply give me some adult interaction so I really don't need an institution. :)
The truth is though, that the unspoken negativity often speaks louder than the gifts of friendship and affirmation. Why is that? Why, when we're blatently uninvited, does that hurt more than the gifts of genuine hospitality bless?
I'm thinking because it brings cause for me to protect my children from the hurt and I remind myself that half-hearted hospitality is appealing to no one. Our home is full. There are usually guests here at least twice a week, laughter, crazy kids with snails for temporary pets, who go out to the garden to graze off peas and herbs and give me cilantro scented kisses.
Lord, help to have a greatful heart for the true gifts of friendship you've placed in my life, for the blessings of hospitality offered to us, and help our home to carry an atmosphere of Your grace and welcome always,
In Jesus' name, I pray,
Blessings to you all and a week of beautiful hospitality given and received to you!