My in-laws, Ron and Sue, are nowhere to be found in this crew, but the picture was taken in their backyard on a hot July day in 2007. The first thing that comes to my mind when I see this photo is how well my in-laws love. They love their grandchildren. They love their children. They love their sons-in-law. And they love their favorite (well, only) daughter-in-law, a term which they revised almost 25 years ago to be daughter-in-love.
They love people they know and they love people they don't know. One is immediately accepted by them simply by the virtue that one is living and breathing.
Sarah at Hashbrowns issued an intriguing assignment. She asked those who read her blog to post the sixth photo from their sixth folder (for some reason that reminds me of the Sheena Easton lyrics from the 80's "You're the seventh son of the seventh son...." ...long time ago...anyway...) This is the photo that won that lottery.
The kiddos in the pic are 57% mine....the two tall ones back left and the two short ones front right. The other three are cousins, but not all grandchildren of my in-laws. But you know what? It doesn't matter to them that we bring extra children along. In fact, when we do they are treated like family. It doesn't matter to my in-laws that one of the other children is from my side of the family. They are genuinely happy to have a "family portrait" that includes any of God's creations. They show love to all they meet!
I've witnessed that over and over again, beginning with their acceptance of me when Mike first took me home to meet them. I've witnessed it as they accepted our adoptive daughter during her very first visit to our home when adoption wasn't even on the radar yet. They have accepted my little brother, my nephews, the kids we kept each summer from Belarus, and my niece in the picture. Each one of them was welcomed enthusiastically to the family.
They are a true picture of God's acceptance of us, and so a witness to all who meet them. There are lots of great qualities about Ron and Sue and this is just one of them that, again, immediately came to mind when I saw the sixth picture in my sixth folder.
I'm so glad they had Mike and raised him to be the man of God, the man of character that he is today, and I have always told friends and family that if I were looking for in-laws instead of a husband, I would have picked them.
What's your story about the sixth picture in your sixth folder?