Monday, December 16, 2013

The In-Laws

Saturday evening was the somewhat annual Crockpot Supper and Family Christmas Sing.  Daniel's Wichita family got together for a crockpot supper and afterward, we had a time of singing, playing, and reading.  Those who were musically talented played or sang, there were a couple readings, and several regular Christmas carols sung by all.  It was a really fun time. 
The part I liked the best was being able to look around the room and see a family gathered, worshipping God and celebrating the birth of His Son, Jesus.  It makes me sad that I would never see my family do something like that.  Mom and Dad both have 4 siblings and among them and their children, there's one, maybe two, couples that are Christians.  The rest espouse scientology, eastern religion, nothing at all (athiests/agnostics), or some perverted form of Christianity. 
My mother-in-law has 5 siblings.  Two of them (and their families: children and grandchildren) were with us that evening and another two (if not all three) of the others would have joined us if they lived closer.  I was incredibly blessed to marry into a family with strongly held Christian beliefs.  This family argues, laughs, shares, and loves.  They take care of each other, they stand by each other through tough times, they celebrate blessings and accomplishments, and they discuss and debate to sharpen each other.  A high priority is placed on family, marriage is kept sacred, and children are incredible blessings.  They are not perfect by any means but they understand the love and grace that has been extended to them and they try hard to extend that same love and grace to others. 

One of the songs we sang was my favorite Christmas song and I will leave you with the words.
I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day:

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

I thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along the unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head:
"There is no peace on earth," I said,
"For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men."

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth he sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail
With peace on earth, good will to men."

Till, ringing singing, on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime,
Of peace on earth, good will to men!

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