Saturday, February 14, 2015

My how the tables have turned...

When we lived in Marshall, we had this teeny tiny dining room table that used to be my parent's. It was in my house growing up and it was passed on to us when Jeff and I got married. Such sweet memories. Colin and Carley ate their first baby food at that table, we ate many a meals there, Jeff spent countless nights studying at that table. But it was too little, and so rickety, and creaked at every wiggle of the table. I actually cried a little when I sold the table. So when we moved to our new house in Ennis, it was naturally time to look for a new table. We had a much bigger eating area and I knew we'd be fostering and needed something bigger. I knew exactly what I wanted. But what I wanted was expensive. So I searched for a few months online for a good deal on what I wanted and started saving. Much to my surprise I found the PERFECT table on Craigslist for about half the price I was expecting to spend!

Why would I blog about a table? There is just so much that happens at this table for our family. It's more than just a table. It's a place where memories are made, ideas happen, lessons are learned, and love is shared. Some of those moments are intentional and planned, some not.

I often think of big events at this table. The holiday meals and the signing of papers when we've received a foster child. But it's also the mundane that happens at the table that is important too. The helping of homework, the Saturday morning breakfasts with puffy eyed and messy haired children, the board games we've played with family and friends.

We "try" to have family devotionals together at the table. We don't have them as often as we should and some are not as successful as others. We've had a few conversations about God that assure me that God is working on my children's heart and other conversations that end with me saying, "Nevermind. Just go play..."

I love that we share this table with kids that aren't our own. Our first foster child spent more time at this table making Colin and Carley laugh until they couldn't breathe because he could burp on command. Then we had the opportunity to pull a high chair up to this table that held our second foster child. We called that her "happy place." She loved to sit there and eat and smile and talk.

I am not a cook. I don't enjoy it and I'm not very good at it. So we've shared some meals at our table that we've forced our way through. It's sometimes even hard for me to keep my own rule of, "Eat, whether you like it or not." We've argued at this table. We've all said words that we don't mean and raised our voices and cried at this table. Yet, we gather back the next day as a family and try again. Because that is what God wants us to do. To forgive and to love and to keep striving toward holiness as a family...together.

I look forward to more memories at our table. I pray for those moments...even the frustrating ones. I pray for more conversations where my children learn more about who God is. I look forward to inviting another foster child to join us at the table. I look forward to hearing cracking voices of puberty and even the rolling eyes of adolescence at that table. And I pray that God will teach me how to gracefully handle arguments that happen there. I even pray that I'll learn to cook more pleasurable meals that we can honestly say, "That was good!"

I just love the beauty of our table holding the messiness of our lives and the graceful times of life. The table is always there for us to meet together regardless of life's circumstances. God is the same way. He is constant and there for me to meet with whether I am loving life or not.