Sunday, August 18, 2013

Uncle Tom

 photo 2226290a-5d55-4540-9ae8-79688368c6bd_zps4ba23832.jpg

This is my Uncle Tom. He looks like my Grandma. We grew up about 6 hours away from my Grandma and my relatives. I only saw Uncle Tom once a year in the summer when we visited Clarion for vacation. 
He was always a little bit of a misfit.

My Grandma had 6 children. Tom is the oldest. All of her children, except for Tom, went on to have a family and career. Tom was different because he always had a new girlfriend and he had a lot of different children with a lot of different women. 
He never had a career.  

I liked visiting him when we went on vacation because he was a little bit eccentric. He had two sons that would play with us named Jason and Michael.  We played in the creek near my Grandma's driveway. 
My Grandma loved Tom very much. 

Tom is getting older. He is 72 now I think. He lives in a trailer. He is a member of a church and they come and help him out sometimes. They help clean up things around his property. They bring him new clothes. 
I am so glad that they do. 

Even though my Uncle Tom has made some very bad choices in his life, he is a human being. And ever human matters, right? 
Every single one.

Kaishon, Sabriah, Naji and I are going to make Uncle Tom a care package this week. We are going to write him letters and send him some special gifts. I heard people talking about Tom after the reunion and they said things like: 
"It's his own fault that he is so poor." 
"He could have worked like all the rest of us did."
"He is never going to change."

They are probably right. But does it matter?
Does it matter if he made terrible choices for 72 years? Doesn't it matter that we are his family and now he needs help? I say we should step in and love. 
Love wins. 


27 comments:

StarTraci said...

You are right -- all humans matter and they each bring something special to our lives. Could he have made better choices? Sure. But who can say different? Not I. I think its wonderful that you are sending him a care package.
Happy Sunday!
:-)
Traci

Nancy {at} powellbrower at home said...

Beautiful story about not judging and spreading love and kindness! Thanks for stopping by.
xo Nancy

Laurie Matherne said...

Your story struck me with a deep feeling. Compassion always should win over judgment, don't you think? I think we can teach children too by our example. Your children will learn to be compassionate by your example. My mama used to visit the "black sheep" of her family. Her eldest brother lived in a trailer with wife number ?. My mama brought them gifts, but most of all she just let him now that he was a part of her life. You are doing the right thing.

BLOGitse said...

All humans matter!
What kind of life we would have if all people were the same....
And we wouldn't have great books, plays and movies if there were not people like Tom.
None of us is perfect though!
Happy Sunday!

Tamar SB said...

What a sweet post, Becky. You're teaching your kids to not judge but to love!!

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Everyone matters and what matters most is that others care enough to share. This was a touching post and thank you for sharing. Hope Uncle Tom enjoys the care package and the caring that was put into it.
Thanks for the visit and comment on our blog post about crepe myrtles.

Laura Delegal - Leroy Photography said...

I think you're right. I'm a Christian and I try to live so others can see Christ in me. I think Jesus would be happy with your sharing and being a blessing to others.

Dorothy said...

That's a fabulous picture and you're right...love wins! Family is so important and I have some Tom's and other eccentric, far-from-perfect people in mine but I wouldn't trade them for anything! What a great lesson to teach the kiddos as well!!!

Jane said...

I think you are such a people person, that is so wonderful. I really like that you send him thinks, I'm sure you make his heart warm and sunny. That is priceless.

Leovi said...

Excellent portrait, transmits good humor!

(◔‿◔) said...

This is a beautiful and interesting photo.
You have shown that age beautifully / You have aged well represented.
I wish you a good start tomorrow in the new week.
Howdy, Wieczora (◔‿◔) | my photoblog

Eva Gallant said...

I love the photo of your Uncle Tom. His face tells a story of a difficult life, yet he has a wonderful smile. I'm glad you are sending him a care package of love; I'm sure he will be thrilled to receive it!

Unknown Mami said...

I just love you and your way of thinking. Yes, Tom matters. It's not like he can go back and unmake the choices he made. He's still worthy of love and support.

Bevy @ Treasured Up and Pondered said...

Reading this through the lens of my own heart, about my own people, "my city"... I can only say "ouch" in response.

Yes! People matter. And I am ashamed to admit I forget just how much sometimes. More times than I realize, I fail to love the way that Jesus loves. And yet I claim to be a Witness.

Thank you for sharing this today.

Blond Duck said...

I love the smile in his wrinkles.

Blond Duck said...

And your sweet words about my writing made my day.

Molly said...

Stunning portrait I love the twinkle in his eye

Mollyxxx

Dina Lettre said...

Love this so much...and I know he will, too!

photowannabe said...

Amen to that Becky...Love Wins.

Isn't that what the Bible says?

Having your family step out and show kindness by packages and letters may never get reciprocated but that's not the point any way.
Its good lessons for Kaishon and others about going beyond themselves. They are lessons for the rest of their lives.
Kudos to you for doing that.

Gigi said...

Becky you are SO right! People matter. Love wins.

I may need to take a step back and see how I can apply this to my own life.

Thank you for the reminder.

really.truly said...

People matter and I miss you!! Gosh, it's been forever. Had to come over and see glimpses of Kaishon...and everyone. Time is flying xoxo-Mimi

Even Miracles said...

Love always wins.
And I think people forget that everyone has a story. Sometimes we don't know all of it. You really have to go to the source to get the full story. Sometimes you might be surprised at what you find out.
Condemn the act not the person
People DO matter - most
Ally

Busy Bee Suz said...

I think you are just the most awesome-est person ever. Yes, love wins. Compassion wins. You are teaching those kids a good life lesson.
I think Uncle Tom is quite a character....gotta love those characters in our lives.
XO

M said...

Yes! And you are teaching Kaishon what so many of us are missing!!

Anonymous said...

You were only 4 hours away....you must drive slow!

Anonymous said...

he still had a family...just not a career...or a job.

his family just happened to include a few wives and girlfriends and some kids who disowned him.

LOVE WINS!!

Skeller said...

i love the way you love.