My Wife and Kids

Dr. Seuss said life is a great balancing act.  Him and about a billion other folks.  They’re only saying it because it’s true.  However, balance is a vaporous thing not subject to precise verification.

For one thing, balance is in the eye of the beholder.  Not everyone has the same number of balls in the air.  Equilibrium cannot be separated from distribution.  My pedestrian observation is that some touting balance don’t juggle many responsibilities.  Sorta like someone with a nanny telling you how to raise young’uns.  Perspective is important though the general truth stands.

Many times, I’ve heard sincere prognosticators admonish that “duties never conflict.”  My duties have.  I didn’t believe it then, and I don’t believe it now.  We ought to prioritize, but the clear path is not always evident and manifold responsibilities add no hours to the day.  Something will go lacking in your life.  It’s not the guilt trip.

We are fortunate to have the grace of God for living and that of some few individuals as no one gets it quite right.  Our friends will give us credit for trying, and our enemies will point out weaknesses from the sidelines.  The struggle for balance is noble, indeed, and worth the effort if not the reward.  May you stave off vertigo in the process.

The family often bears the brunt of chaos.  Like the roots of trees, it can be taken for granted as its support is mostly unseen and always there.  That is until it’s not.  The edifice without sure footing inevitably crashes down and ruined lives litter the landscape of our modern world.  And the worlds of antiquity.  What can people desirous of good accomplish if foundations are destroyed?

Life gets busy.  People scatter like leaves in the fall.  Friendships not lost are loosened through disuse.  Yet the family remains constant and quiet enduring loss in the quest for success.  In this manner, it too may be lost without intervention.  Perhaps, we should be mindful of the stabilizing factors in our lives.

I have been forsaken by people I thought I could trust with my life and have endured many blind nights and fruitless victories.  When I turned my face from the onslaught of each tempest, however, my family was still there.  While I had not forgotten them, I took them for granted.  This sad reality has been repeated times over in every generation.  It’s not only men who do this.  Many women have lost sight of real value, and children have disgraced the ones who gave them life.  The sword cuts both ways, but now is not the time to assign blame.

While our families may cause pain, most people I know take a great deal of pleasure in their nuclear units.  I say nuclear units because that is the real definition of family.  It is not my point to quibble with those who call their ball team family, only to observe that God does not set people in ball teams as a cure for loneliness.

We speak most harshly to those who would die for us.  I owe a great deal of gratitude and perhaps greater contrition to my wife and kids for the roles they have played in my life.  Many times, I’ve said that friends are those who stand by you, and my family has always supported me. 

My wife, Debi, is the best church member I have ever had (and has the most advice for the pastor).  I once laughed at men who said their wife was their best friend.  It was because I didn’t understand what friendship really meant.

Sterl

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