I had always thought he wanted to just do his own thing, since he didn’t particularly like board games and such, so I was surprised when he told me, “I’ve always felt kind of on the outside when I’m with your family.” I mean, we had been married about 20 years by then and I had never known. I realized that instead of just assuming my husband didn’t want to be a part of games or silliness when we visited with my family, I should at least ask him to be a part, make sure he knows the circle is open and we want him in it, if he wants to be. Since then, I’ve tried to do that very thing and just have a different attitude about it and things are so much better. He does enjoy doing things with us or at least being invited. It’s a lot more fun for everyone else, too, when he’s a part of things.
I sure felt badly that I never knew that before. I was always having so much fun with my family, whom I love so much, and he seemed happy reading a book or watching TV in the other room. I assumed and you know what assuming does (If you don’t, send me an email and I’ll explain).
All this made me think of the Church, which is often referred to as a family. We can get so close to one another and enjoy being together so much that we forget about people who are on the “outside” or think they wouldn’t want to be a part anyway. Why don’t we try asking them? How about we let go of each other enough that the circle opens up, ready to welcome more in? We would probably be surprised how many see the love and life we have in God and long to be included. God did make us to be a family, but He is also passionate about every one of his kids who hasn’t found their way yet to be invited in.