As a matter of fact, it has been coming for as long as I have been blogging – and that is almost ten years.
Every now and then, after posting a family get-together or reunion – like last night – I hear things like:
- “I love your family.”
- “You have a wonderful family.”
- “I wish our family liked each other.”
However, the writer only knows us by photos on my posts.
I want to assure you that we are a normal family just like yours with our own set of pain and problems – in our small family as well as in our extended families. I never want to give you the impression that we are perfect or problem-free.
I am not a blogger who writes a lot of deep spiritual or life lessons. There are many others who do that – and do it quite well. That is not my passion. I choose to use photos rather than words. This is one of only a few times in my years of blogging that I am not adding even one photo.
My spiritual gift is encouragement and I love photography, so the passion behind my blog is to encourage my readers with posts that include photos of:
- Challenging Bible verses
- Pretty, nature pictures
- Life in our family
- Travel highlights
- TFC ministry events
- Daily happenings of things that challenge or bless me.
As a rule I hear from people who are blessed and encouraged – especially by the Bible verses and pretty travel or nature pictures.
- One person told me that she is housebound and my blog helps her get out of the house.
It may be obvious to my readers that I have a passion for those who have not chosen to follow Christ.
However, you may not know that my greatest passion is for Christians who are miserable and missing out on the delight and peace there is in doing things God’s way – even during pain, misunderstandings, and problems. I am saddened and burdened for bitter, unforgiving, disobedient Christians because of the spiritual and physical issues those things deliver.
My goal in blogging is to daily remind myself and others that it is best to do things God’s way: to obey Him and delight in his creation of nature and people.
There is probably nothing more painful to me then when someone misunderstands my passion and tells me that I misrepresent the truth by only airing the fun and delightful things in my life and family.
- Personally, I don’t feel like it is my job to air our family’s pain or problems on the internet, unless I choose to air my own struggles – and if you read my blog, you know I usually only air my struggles after I have again gotten a grip on life. 🙂
- At times, after receiving words of criticism concerning my blog or pictures, I am tempted to stop blogging – and that happens a time or two a year – but each time I get close to quitting, God reminds me of the passion He gave me to encourage my blog friends. (He did that again through a sermon at our church several weeks ago.)
This seems like the right time to assure you that Satan is just as busy in our family – immediate and extended – as he is in yours.
- Each of us have made wrong choices – some public sins and others that are more private, like stubbornness, selfishness, complaining, or gossip.
We are very human.
- Some family members are gracious and kind to those with whom they disagree, while others are intolerant and judgmental.
- Not everyone likes each other.
- Some are reclusive and stay to themselves when the family is together.
- Others are chatty and talk too much.
- There are health issues and worries that plague each family.
- There are job concerns – some work too hard, others not so much.
- Some of the children are good students – others struggle in school.
- We are careful in our discussion of Christianity, religion, or politics because we range from very conservative to very liberal – especially in the extended families.
I could go on and on with examples of how we qualify as a normal family, but I think you get the point.
My life-chapter is Psalm 37.
- My life-verse is the 4th one in that chapter: Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. (English Standard Version)
I intend to keep on delighting in the Lord and his creation of nature and people – and showing you pictures of those delights – knowing that God is in the process of giving me the desires of my heart.
But, please remember neither I nor my family have a perfect, problem-free life.