Last week our oldest son, Paul turned thirty. He lives about six hours away and drove up for the weekend to celebrate. We were twenty-one and twenty-two when Paul was born. We were both college students living on love and not much else. I had a quick vision of us sitting in our little kitchen with Paul in the high chair that still sits in the corner of the kitchen.


Our youngest two are seven and ten. They were born in Ethiopia and joined our family through adoption six years ago. They never lived with Paul who was out of college and living on his own when they came to our family. Since our family is so spread out, sometimes it doesn’t feel like we’re all one family. I totally loved looking out over my table and seeing my  family together again.


We made a big meal.  My husband, Steve grilled a pork loin while the rest of us teamed up to prepare a birthday feast.   We all sat down at our traditional places at the table.  There was a bit of jostling around as we set the table for a few extras. Our seven year old, who loves the spotlight made certain she wouldn’t be crowded out of  her special spot at the head of the table.


Loving the audience, she begged to say the meal time blessing for our special meal. Typically Steve says the blessing with the kids adding in anything they would like to pray for. Of course we agreed. Here’s how her prayer went, “God, please let Paul marry Sara and let me be the flower girl.”


We all laughed and then encouraged Paul to move forward with this plan so as to make sure Megan’s prayer would be answered positively!


Thirty years after our first son was born, we are still parenting. Our lives are very different than when we were twenty-two sitting around a tiny table in an old rental house. Our kids who are separated by years and by experience, by gender and by race are bound together. They are bound by family, but most of all, they are bound by the love of a God who binds us all. 


Love old hymn.  Bind us together Lord.