This Sunday the church I grew up in is honoring my Grandmother for almost 50 years of service. My Grandfather was the Pastor until his passing, and at 83 years old this is the first time they have honored her is such a way. I couldn’t be there with her but I sent this letter to her. Thought I would share it with the world. “Like” this letter if you have/had a Gramma like this! If you did and can do so, please tell her. I’m sure it will mean a lot to her!
I want to say thank you for showing me what the heart of a Christian woman should look like.
Many people will tell you how you should act and what you should do, but very few actually live a way that you can watch them as a living example.
From a child, even until now, you have never failed me nor have you ever turned your back on me. No matter what I needed from prayer to pocket change I could always count on you. The prayers were always answered and if it was cash that I needed it always showed up.
However there have been more important lessons that you have taught me.
You taught me the true meaning of giving. As a child whenever you had a drink or food you always shared with me. I never paid attention to it then, but I have watched you do the same with my daughters. What I noticed by watching from afar is that you always give to them first. You say it is because you don’t want them eating behind you. However I can see it is much more than that. You don’t just give them a part but you let them eat or drink until they don’t want anymore. Even if it is right after they just finished eating and you haven’t had a bite all day. You will let them nibble and sip until the very last bit is gone. Meaning you are willing to go without to make sure they don’t. Not many people give in that way.
You taught me that a Prayer Closet isn’t just used for prayers. I remember as a child sometimes walking in on you sitting in your quiet space, not necessarily in prayer. But in deep thought with tears streaming down your face because someone had hurt you. This taught me that I don’t have to lash out in anger because someone hurt me. I didn’t even have to go to them at all, but that I can find a quiet place and sit and meditate and deal with my hurt in a more private and appropriate way. I do that now and understand that in those quiet times you can talk with God and more importantly allow God to talk to you and heal a pain someone might not even know they inflicted. I also go there when I don’t have answers or see a way out of a situation and wait for an answer.
You taught me how to forgive. I have watched you get angry with people, hurt by people, let down by people and just outright disgusted with people and still love and forgive them. This is one of the more powerful lessons that I learned watching you in action. I am so blessed that I was able to not only witness this but was able to apply it to my life. So many people harbor harsh feelings and will not forgive each other and I have watched it poison their whole lives and pollute their families. It is such a Blessing to be able to forgive even when a person doesn’t ask for it. I am so happy that I don’t carry the burden of not being able to forgive. Forgiveness has made me a better mother, friend and woman. I learned that right from you.
I could go on and on because you have taught my so many things. However I will leave it with this final lesson that I learned from you. I learned from you that being a Christian woman is much more than going to church on Sundays and wearing pretty hats. It’s getting up in the middle of the night and making Green Beans and Potatoes because someone doesn’t have any food. It is praying with a heart that believes that your prayers do not fall on deaf ears. It is showing up to a church for over 40 years and refusing to leave when the going gets tough. It is in loving your family in a way that does not expect much but gives everything (I’m still working on that one). It’s being quiet in spirit when you want to scream, it’s staying in the background when you want the spotlight. It is having not only a heart for God but sharing that heart with strangers, friends, family and everyone you meet. It’s in being kind and always striving to do the right thing. It’s in rebuking those you love but always with a, “Now you know I love you” first. It’s in working hard even when you hurt. It’s in so many of the things that I am fortunate enough to watch you do.
So Gramma even though I couldn’t be there I couldn’t let this chance pass me without letting you know that Zion Progress might appreciate the work that you have done but I appreciate the woman that your love has helped me to become.
I love you