When Our Imperfect Family Picture is Simply Enough

christmascard13

I almost didn’t do it this year. We’ve sent a Christmas card with a family picture each year since Hannah was a baby. But this year I just didn’t have the heart for it. What would I send? Nothing seemed right with our family feeling fractured the way we are.

Last year at this time we were in a terrible crisis with Dimples and, after sending a small stack of cards, I threw the rest in the trash. It was a sad day.

While I may feel that our family is pulled apart, the Lord is holding us all together and even Dimples is right where she needs to be. So, I took a deep breath and made this card. It wasn’t want I wanted, but I told myself, “It’s enough. This is enough for me this year, and the fact that I can even make this card is evidence of God’s generous provision for us.”

2013 has been a hard year with many challenges, but here we are, the Qualls family; messy, imperfect, and drenched in the loving kindness of God.

Thanks be to our loving God.

If you missed my earlier post, Can We Accept a Different Family Picture From the One We Imagined?, be sure to take a look – and don’t miss the great comments.

Lisa

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Let me introduce myself. Russ and I are the parents of twelve children by birth and adoption, and sometimes more through foster care. I'm the creator of One Thankful Mom which has been as much of a gift to me as to my readers. In 2011 I became a TBRI® Pracitioner* and have lived and breathed connected parenting ever since. I'm deeply honored to be the co-author, together with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis, of The Connected Parent; it is her final written work. I love speaking at events for adoptive and foster parents. I'm also the co-founder of The Adoption Connection, a podcast and resource site for adoptive moms. I mentor and encourage adoptive moms so you can find courage and hope in your journeys of loving your children well.

0 Comments

  1. Deborah
    December 12, 2013

    <3 HUGS <3 I understand and it's the best I can offer.

    Reply
  2. Hannah Hilgendorf
    December 12, 2013

    <3 Praying for you this Advent and Christmastide.

    Reply
  3. Kate Sumpter
    December 12, 2013

    Oh, I love this collage of pictures! Just right in my mind for the many movements of a large family. Merry Christmas to you all!

    Reply
  4. Lisa
    December 12, 2013

    I think that is a beautiful card that shows the joy of the Lord on your faces, in spite of the trials you all have endured this year. May not be what you expected or desired, but God is in the midst of your mess, and He is good all the time! Bless you, Lisa.

    Reply
  5. daysofwonderandgrace
    December 12, 2013

    It isn't what you imagined, but it is beautiful because it is what you have been given and the Giver is good. Even if inscrutible…. Know what I see in this collage? That you were present this year, inside your family, documenting these moments despite the pain that might have made you leave your camera on the shelf. You didn't. That, too, is testimony :).

    Reply
  6. Erin Jepsen
    December 12, 2013

    You're still a family, even if you're physically or emotionally in different places. God has joined you all together and that is a fact and a truth, no matter how many miles lie in between. Hugs to you.

    Reply
  7. Lori Glasscock
    December 12, 2013

    Funny, this is how my card is going to look this year too, if I ever manage to get it pulled together, printed, and mailed. I may have fewer children at home these days, but toddler-hood is getting the best of me (literally). Your card is beautiful and I look forward to displaying one on my bulletin board. Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  8. Emily
    December 12, 2013

    Beautiful, every picture and every face and the decision to do it and the grace to do it. Love you.

    Reply
  9. Rebecca
    December 12, 2013

    It's wonderful.

    Reply
  10. Angela Crawford
    December 12, 2013

    I can understand your feelings.. I loved your earlier post on a different family picture than we imagined! I sometimes fear the future! I love your holiday cards!!

    Reply
  11. Erika
    December 12, 2013

    It's beautiful, praying, God bless

    Reply
  12. Michelle
    December 12, 2013

    LOVE the card! Merry Christmas from one messy family to another. 🙂 Thankful for a big God who creates beauty from it all!

    Reply
  13. MommaFoster
    December 12, 2013

    If you have 15 minutes, I think you would really be encouraged by this devotional from Beth Moore. It's about the Lord bringing redemption in the 12th month of an awful year. Praying for you and your family. http://vimeo.com/81129105

    Reply
  14. Susan P.
    December 12, 2013

    I can only echo Michelle's comment – Merry Christmas from one messy family to another. As I heard on the radio today, if I can lay just one stone from the wreckage of my life that shows Christ to a great, great, great grandchild someday, then it has all been worth it.

    Reply
  15. DFNY
    December 12, 2013

    What a beautiful card, showing all parts of the family. I like the picture of the engaged couple too–very nice. Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    Damaris

    Reply
  16. Laine
    December 12, 2013

    It's beautiful. Prayers for your family.

    Reply
  17. Mary (Owlhaven)
    December 12, 2013

    Looks wonderful!

    Reply
  18. Luann Yarrow Doman
    December 13, 2013

    I don't know you personally, but I think you're not just one thankful mom, but one incredible mom. This picture brings tears to my eyes b/c your love for your family is so similar to God's love for us. His family isn't picture perfect either, but it's still a beautiful mess.

    Reply
  19. Sarah
    December 13, 2013

    Beautiful card, Lisa!

    Reply
  20. Courtney
    December 17, 2013

    so thankful for you. merry christmas. He is enough. for it ALL.

    Reply

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