We had a lovely time. We watched home videos late at night, laughing our heads off with Middle Son, Young Son and Young Son’s girlfriend. We had the traditional meal around the table, and it was all it could be.
Every year Grandpa Ed calls for a time of toasting, and everyone must say what they are thankful for at this time, and every year he chokes up and weeps openly and can’t get through his speech of gratitude for his family. Middle Son, who is not given to sentimentality of any kind, said something extremely sweet in his toast. Over the week he has been home, he has spent time with his friends who have been giving hospitality, help, encouragement and counsel to a young couple who have been homeless, in and out of jail–just generally down and out, but who have been trying to put their lives back together.
The young woman’s father lives in the same town as she, but refuses to have contact with her. Middle Son said hearing that caused him to realize something he’d never been conscious of before–that there is nothing he could do that would be so bad that he could not come home and have his parents’ help and encouragement and love. And in his toast he said he was grateful for that. That really touched me.
Linda and I had a great time, but she wasn’t feeling too well.
Listen to these fellas from Goshen College in Indiana sing. A nice lead-in to Sunday. Hat tip to Hairy Eyeball
They are singing a Mennonite hymn:
I Bind My Heart This Tide
I bind my heart this tide to the Galilean’s side, to the wounds of Calvary, to the Christ who died for me.
I bind my soul this day to the neighbor far away, and the stranger near at hand, in this town, and in this land.
I bind my heart in thrall to the God, the Lord of all, to the God, the poor one’s friend, and the Christ whom he did send.
I bind myself to peace, to make strife and envy cease. God, knit thou sure the cord of my thralldom to my Lord.