that Christmas card!

I got that Christmas card in the mail today.  The one that in the past just made me cry.  The one that feels like it is a parent bragging, "Hey, Look at this picture of my perfect family! Don't my kids look great! We are so blessed!"

No, it didn't make me cry this year - it made me laugh.  Really?  This is what you are sending?  It came in a beautiful costly envelope.  You know, the kind that you pay extra for.  Thick material, nice closure, and of course a stamped family seal on the outside.  Opened it up, hoping that this year the envelope would include more than it has in the past.  But, it didn't.  Same old thing.  A picture perfect family photograph of mom, dad, and four children.  Everyone is happy. They look like they are ready to run for Senate.

No names or ages are listed.  No comments about the meaning of the season.  Just a family photo.

Now, if this family weren't Christians, it probably wouldn't bug me so much.  But their card says nothing about the meaning of the season, other than the words embellished on it, "Merry Christmas!" Perhaps if it had told me a little about what is going on their lives, such as how dad's business is going or how mom is doing with her work, I might be okay with it.  But, all it shows is a picture of a family of six all looking happy.  I kind of wish they wouldn't have sent it.

I sent them a card this year that announced the birth of Christ. There were a few general details about our lives and where God has taken us.  No picture of us of course.  When do married couples without children ever get their picture taken together professionally, other than perhaps for the church directory?  And then those really aren't the style of pictures that usually go out in Christmas cards.

I'm not sure what message they intend to send with the photograph or what they expect me to do with the photograph once we've received it. We aren't really that close.  I've only met their oldest child.  It feels wrong to throw a photo in the trash. I still have their photo sitting on my counter from last year. But, why?

I wrote their father on Facebook last year and shared a little about our struggle and how unwelcome their family photo with no note was in the midst of our grief.  I kind of thought he may have taken a hint and not sent us one this year. But, I suppose since I sent them one for the first time, I left them with no choice, but to return the "favor."

I suspect that they do just want to keep us on their mailing list, so when one of them runs for office, it won't seem odd for them to send us campaign literature.    I guess I really don't know why they chose to send what they do.  Perhaps they are just too busy with their professional dual-income lives, raising four children, and volunteering at church, to tell us much more.

A call would be nice.

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