Family is truly a gift. I have been thinking about that the last few days. Having my family all come and visit me this holiday season has been such a blast. There were lots of us packed under one roof with gobs of food, play-time with the little ones, strong coffee mornings, long cold hikes, laugher....it was fabulous and such a miraculous blessing that we could be together. Even as I reflect upon time with my family, I think about how important it is to be a part of something. A family. A team. A community. A friend group. I don't think "family" is only something you are just born into. I have friends in my life that I truly consider family. They feel just as much like family as my own. A community can be family. A workplace. A neighborhood.
And as my time with my family draws to an end, I think of the people that don't have families. Maybe that's you? And maybe this season has been really hard for you. We always say that loneliness is the worst disease...that feeling alone and isolated might be the worst thing ever. And if that's where you find yourself as you read this...there is hope. YOU matter and there is a place for you.
And if you find yourself reading this content in a settled place with loved ones all around...maybe take an extra minute over the next few days to reach out to someone you see or know that might need to be found. To be in a community. Send a text. Meet up for coffee. Invite people over and eat food....or make cookies.
As I write this, I am yet again reminded that this is a big part of why music is so huge for us. We find common ground. We identify with someone else who has experienced the same thing. We find a home for our thoughts and feelings...someone else has been there too. Music brings people together. At a show...when we are onstage and we see a crowd of people singing along to a song we created...it's the best thing ever! Total strangers coming together and all being a part of something. We're all singing the same words...different lives, different stories...but we're all singing the same song.
I think that's why 'Beliebers' are so darn strong. They are a part of a family. You might laugh...but I think it's great. They have a family. They are all in something together. They may never meet face to face, but they share a common love and common values...and music did that. Well, music and a very cute teenage boy...but it's the musical platform that brought them all together. That's what Justin has created...a family.
Anyway...don't get your panties in a bundle if you hate Bieber. It's just an example. I am grateful and blessed from time with my family this week and wanted to share how full my heart is. We all belong in families.
My hope is that loneliness dissipates...And that love and belonging flourish.