“Mac and Cheese again!?” The six-year-old wrinkled her nose in disgust.
“Now what did I say about complaining?” Her father tapped her tiny nose with his finger. “Be happy for what the Lord provides.”
“Yes sir,” she responded with a slight grin.
After the girl’s mother dished up everybody’s plate, they bowed and thanked the Lord for allowing them to eat that evening. Times had been rough for the small family. He had lost his job, and now they had to downgrade to living in a camper on his parent’s land.
“I’m sorry, Mommy, for complaining.”
The woman took the girl into her lap and held her tight. “It’s okay. Our natural tendency is to complain, but that only means we’ve forgotten all of God’s many blessings and his deep love for us.”
The couple held hands as she leaned on his shoulder. The future was unknown, but their God had made himself known these past few months. Even if it was Mac & Cheese, they were being taken care of. And they still had each other. Love would bring them through.
The smell of crab legs and steak enticed each member of the family out of their rooms and to the dining room table. She had made everybody’s favorite in hopes of a nice family dinner. It had been so long since everybody ate at the same time.
Her children had grown so distant with their activities, friends, and school. When they were home, they rarely exited their bedrooms. Her husband worked sixty hours a week and even when he was home, still was writing emails or taking “important” calls.
“Tonight, we are visiting. Phones are put away,” she demanded up front.
Her 16-year-old raised his eyebrows and laughed. “Right.” Immediately he began texting again. “This can’t wait,” he added.
Taking a deep breath, she repeated herself with greater force. “Tonight is a family dinner. Please, just for one hour. Let’s talk.”
She winced. Tonight was not going to be the night.
Her husband peered at his cellphone. “Sorry, hun. I gotta take this.”
Her daughter laughed. “Well, it was a good try, Mom. Not sure what made you think it was going to happen. But if you don’t mind since Dad is gone, I’m gonna take this to my room.”
One by one each member excused themselves until she was left alone. Her food sprinkled in tears.
“Better is a dinner of herbs where love is than a fattened ox and hatred with it.” Proverbs 15:17