Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Grandma Sallie

For the second time since our fourth child was born (he turned one on June 24), I'm alone to care for the kids. My husband is gone on our church mission trip. I'm not complaining. We enjoy the time, even though we miss my husband terribly. One of the positives is that I get a lot of work done staying up later because I can't sleep as well without my better half. I'm hoping to actually reach my goal of writing two to three blog entries this week. We'll see...

Anyway, this time alone makes me think back to the first time I was alone with four children. A few days after my son was born, my grandmother died. She had been my last remaining grandparent. I always called her Grandma Sallie. I didn't go to the funeral because we live so far away, and taking four kids five-years and under when my milk was just coming in wouldn't have been pleasant on the road, but my husband went to preach part of her service. He told me he didn't realize how much we were alike until after her death. I mostly take that as a compliment. I knew her godly characteristics, but I also know that some of the sins I struggle with were "inherited" from her.

Women don't have to be perfect to be Titus 2 women. Grandma Sallie was a strong woman who did whatever it took to provide for her family after the death of her first husband. At the time, the mother of five boys had three of them still living at home. My dad was the middle child of the five and fourteen-years-old. Grandma Sallie was a seamstress, working diligently with her hands. Not only did it put food on the table, but it provided my dad with a beautiful bride, as Grandma Sallie made my mother's wedding dress. Grandma Sallie was buried in a dress she made for herself to wear to my wedding. Unfortunately, she wasn't able to attend. A spider bite made her very sick with the frail health she already had regularly. It still touched my heart to know that the most beautiful clothing she had when she left this world was related to me in a small way.

Grandma Sallie had only a formal third-grade education, but she studied her sons' textbooks that they brought home from school to their homework. She always read novels, as long as I can remember, and most importantly, she read her Bible. We know that "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight" (Proverbs 9:10), so Grandma Sallie had all she ever really needed to know. Every time I talked to her, Grandma Sallie let me know she had been praying for my family and me.

Back before the casinos came to town, my grandmother lived in Cherokee, NC for the better part of the year when I was a child. I thought I had the coolest grandmother because she spent many an evening dancing and clogging to bands that played at outdoor venues. She continued to "work at home" in her camper with her hands as she made beaded jewelry to sell. I loved my Cherokee looking earrings she made, and I felt a great connection to Grandma Sallie's grandmother who had been a full-blooded Cherokee. Just this week, my oldest daughter asked me if Grandma Sallie wore moccasins. I have no idea where the question came from, but she sure did where them most all the time!

I am thankful for the legacy of faith I have on both sides of my family. I look forward to seeing my grandparents in Glory. I'm thankful that Grandma Sallie was a Titus 2 Woman to me!

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