Ray and I recently ran into a couple whom we had not seen in several years. I’ll call them Pete and Janie. We had a joyful reunion. About a week later, Ray and I saw them again, this time at a funeral visitation for an elderly friend. On both occasions, we caught up on family news.
At the visitation, I said a couple of things about our family that naturally revealed our family’s closeness. I wasn’t making a point or anything. I was just telling a couple of newsy things I have told many friends before.
Janie’s face had an expression that was a far cry from the happy response I usually get when I say the exact same things to other folks. When I finished, she looked at me intently and said a statement that neither Ray nor I can remember verbatim, but that went something like this:
When family is good, it is good; but when family is bad, it is bad.
An unspoken pain was behind both the expression and the words.
Thank you for teaching your children the joy of family.
. . . in you and in your descendants
shall all the families of the earth be blessed.
Behold, I am with you
and will keep you wherever you go . . .
Genesis 28:14-15, NASB