“His master replied, ‘Well done my good and faithful servant’. You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many. Come and share your master’s happiness.” –Matthew 25:21
In a study I did recently I was to write the names of those people who influenced and encouraged me in my faith. One of the persons I quickly wrote down was my step-grandmother who we called “Granny”. I have the best memories of going to her and Papa’s house in Georgia. My cousins and I did everything from climbing on giant rolls of hay, to taking dried tobacco leaves off the sticks from which we got 2 cent per stick! After our days work, Papa and Granny would take us to an old country store at which I would buy a Yoohoo chocolate milk and a moon pie with the money I earned. I remember “pulling candy” during a cane grinding at which a wonderful, thick cane syrup was made before our eyes. And I remember hunting for easter eggs behind the chicken houses on a place mom called “steep hill”. Steep hill was covered in violets and live oak trees. After the hunt we would ride in the back of my Papa’s truck and eat some of the eggs we found. My cousin always brought the salt shaker and we shared our eggs. She ate the whites and I ate the yolks. Oh my goodness, the sights and sounds in my memory are so rich from those days! Some of you may have memories just like these.
The memories of those days that shaped my life the most were not of syrup and moon pies though, they were of watching my Granny live out her faith. Every night she would come in the rooms my brother and I were sleeping in and pray over us in her loud yet loving voice. I’m ashamed to say I didn’t value it at the time. In the mornings, I remember waking up to her vibrating, heavy footsteps entering the bathroom and then having the headboard rattle when the door shut. A few moments later, Granny’s voice would begin reading scripture out loud. I could hear it clearly through the walls of that old farmhouse as it echoed around my bedroom. I remember thinking that reading scripture is nice but wouldn’t God be okay with it just as well a little later in the day… like when I was awake! The mind of a child through the generations has always been about “me, myself and I” hasn’t it!
The reason these memories are in the forefront of my mind today is because I just received a facebook notification from one of my cousins that Granny isn’t doing well. Hospice has been called in and the usual loud, loving voice has become quiet and weak. I haven’t seen her in a very long time and for that I have regrets. She influenced my walk with my heavenly father more than I had ever realized to this point. I wish she knew that. I wish I had visited more and told her how much her early morning readings meant to me during my childhood and now. Somehow I have to believe she knows that though and when she enters the pearly gates the Lord will greet her with the words “Well done my good and faithful servant”.
We may be having a lasting effect on someone listening to us right now … let’s make it count.
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