I’ve been thinking a lot about all of the beautiful pics (particularly on Instagram, because that’s where I hang out these days). These pics display perfection, right!? The perfect, house, perfect family, perfect vignettes. I understand this, because I know when I’m looking on IG, I’m looking for inspiration and quite frankly I’m not following people with bad photography. I’m following people to be inspired! But there’s danger here! A danger of losing my grip on reality! It was in this thought process that I remembered the following get-together…
Oh how I love these faces! Most of them aren’t my kiddos (at least biologically speaking). Let me explain. Last fall, I was in the process of finishing my house. My new build! Exciting right?! So, in this interim period, I was advised to invite these kids over (as I have for decades past) and have a photo session, just doing what I do. Cooking, talking and just hanging with them. But I want to tell you the “truth behind the pics”.
The reason most of these pics aren’t of my own kids, is because they were still not “smile ready”. You see they had been in a new city for one year, and witnessed and endured the divorce of their mom and dad. All, within the course of this particular year. They had been through hell and back and they were still fuming, reeling, in a state of dismay??? You name it.
I remember thinking how fake the whole thing felt. Even though I had done this same thing with these same kids, hundreds of times previously, it wasn’t genuine this particular evening.
These cookies… I FORGOT THE FREAKING SUGAR!!! True story!! I was so distracted and concerned about the situation, I neglected to add sugar!! But doesn’t it look like a perfect happy get together!?
Yes, we laughed. Because these kids are funny and I was trying so hard to make it like it used to be. See the glass of wine?? All in an attempt to calm the nerves. Lol, but not really funny.
But the truth is, even though the photography was awesome, we were still bleeding out. Maybe internally, but striving for life’s breath non-the-less.
The realization that something is missing! But don’t we look like the happy couple!?
Yes, the perfect family. The one that constantly opens the doors to any kids within hearing distance. Praying with them, feeding them…
I literally asked my photographer (and friend) to not force any “family” pics as I wasn’t sure my son would even be willing to be in a pic with me!
My point for this post is two-fold. One, don’t believe all the perfect pics you see! And Two, don’t shy away from life, just because it’s not perfect right now! This gathering was difficult to say the least, but the truth is, we live in a sin infested world. It’s more often, way uglier than the beautiful pics that are shoved down our throats at a constant pace. THIS is reality.
I wish every gathering I hosted was full of formal attire and beautiful hairdos and breathtaking tablescapes. But these pics are full of God’s creation. Broken as we are, we love each other.
I encourage you, if your family is struggling and appears less than perfect. I hold you up right now in prayer. Because the only perfection is that of our God, and His perfect love casts out fear.
“I’ve picked you.
I haven’t dropped you.
I’m with you.
There’s no need to fear for I am your God.
I’ll give you strength.
I’ll help you.
I’ll hold you steady,
Keep a firm grip on you.”
Happy Connection Monday!! #keepinitreal