Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Thankful Tuesdays: Gathering of the imperfect

It is Chinese New Year.  People visit each other, and feast.  The little ones get hong baos, and eat too much candy.  For most families, it is a time to come together, to remark upon how fast the children grow, to wear new clothes, to take lots of photos.  It is a shiny, happy time, full of red and gold, the loud bang of drums, the festiveness of new blooms and lion dances.  It is another time for us to gather.  

But gatherings, be it two or more, are made of imperfect people, trying to love each other in imperfect ways.  How do you love, when sometimes a hubby chooses to watch a movie he has watched before, when you ask him for help to change a printer cartridge?  How do you love, when visits from grandparents always generate poor appetite and constipation from your child?  How do you love, when sometimes a daughter-in-law is impatient?  How do you love, when a child is disobedient and testing your patience, when your patience is already strained from sleepless nights due to nightmares?  How do you love, when a loved one is impatient, or doesn't listen when you most need a listening ear?  

How do you love, when attending cell group seems draining, because everyone meets once a week, shares their complaints as prayer requests, then disappears for the rest of the week?  How do you love, when the person next to you in church gives you a limp handshake and doesn't look you in the eye?  How do you love, when someone cuts in front of you in traffic or in the checkout for groceries?  How do you love, when your neighbor drips water all over your almost dry laundry?  

This week, as we gather again as imperfect people, trying to love imperfectly, I am reminded that "since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.  No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us." (1 John 4: 11-12)  I am shown how imperfect is my love for others, and how much I need God to enable me to love others more.  And I am thankful for the little signs of love around me, imperfect as they are, as they can be taken by our perfect God and made complete. 

And I give thanks for these imperfect gatherings that allow us to celebrate milestones... of a baby turning 3 months, and being able to flip halfway....

... and being able to sit in his Bumbo seat, and babble and coo.  

I am grateful that we can gather, to share the joy of a little boy turning 3 years old, and laugh with him as he huffs and puffs at his candles which refuse to go out...

... and all the helping hands that made that birthday party possible.

Blowing balloons with the pump.

I give thanks for these gatherings, that help us see the brighter side to things, and allow us to make light of sunburnt ears and falls...

Junior J's ears swelled up after a swim during our recent trip to Malaysia as the hubby forgot to apply sunscreen on his ears.  He looked like an elephant for awhile, but thankfully applying calendula oil helped the swelling go down quickly.

... and togetherness that allow all things to be shared, be it food, or good news, or even Bumbo seats.

Yes, he's so skinny, he can fit in it!

Imperfect gatherings, where God's love can be made complete in us.  What are you thankful for?  

PS: Our first grateful gathering starts next week!  Are you ready to give thanks and link up?


  1. Love your posts babe! Am reminded that we are not perfect ourselves and I need to exercise more patience when dealing with people. Baby J looks so cute!! argh! Haven't seen him yet!

  2. Happy birthday to Junior J!! and yes, it is hard to remember to love when we are all imperfect...but thank you for the reminder :)


  3. Very nicely written. Happy New Year, babe!

  4. Well-written indeed!- The part on loving the imperfects. Thank you for the reminder!

    Happy birthday to Junior J and happy new year to you! :)


  5. Joanna: Now you have! ;) And yes, patience is something I always seem to lack and seem to need! Hang in there!

    Dr N Eple-Adei: Thanks for linking up and sharing!

  6. Olimomok: Thanks, happy CNY to you too! :) Take care!

    Anya & Arielle's mom: Happy CNY to you and your family too! Thanks for taking time to give thanks!

  7. Hmm, just wondering... how does the grateful gathering linkup work? I just saw this today, via dottiedotz... am I too late to join in?

  8. Hi Florence, no you are not too late! Just wait for this coming Tues post to link up, all you have to do is add your link at the bottom to join in. Wait for Tue! Thanks for wanting to join in!



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