Monday, September 8, 2014

For the Love of Grace


It was always there to greet me, no matter how she felt.

Her smile was the best.

It appeared in the sunshine—when we hugged her little frame, apologized for all our silly chatter, and included her in our songs. 

Her lips parted, her eyes crinkled and danced. She grinned.

It appeared like a rainbow in the downpour of life—when she told me how good Jesus was, despite the plague upon her body. 

Her lips parted, her eyes crinkled and danced. She grinned.

The first time she pulled me into her arms, she wanted to know about boys. How many of them were seeking my heart—? How many of them was I planning to give it to—? Her soft hands outstretched to take mine—warm, comforting. I was young, back then. Naïve, and afraid of boys. Hiding too far within myself to think of relationships.

She walked with me, down her old lanes of memory. I never thought I’d be good enough for him, she said. He was so in love with Jesus and so smart, and I was just a little thing. Small in stature, small in faith. He was the best thing that ever happened to me. Find a man like that, my girl. Find a man like him.

She would have said it wasn’t much of a conversation. But the string of those words remains wrapped around my heart. Buried with the spade of love—deep within my soul. I wait for the proper day to unearth them, her wisdom, and the love she planted down to my deepest core.

The second time she pulled me into her arms, she wanted to know about my face. Why was it so ashen—? What was I not telling her—? How long had I been sick—? Her soft hands outstretched to take mine—warm, comforting. I was young back then. 

To me, it was a petty thing. The pain I was hiding that year was nothing on what I knew of hers. Every day she ached, every day she endured the fire, and every day…

It was always there to greet me, no matter how she felt.

Her smile was the best.
  
She was my inspiration. On the days that I trudged in, weak-kneed, hiding tears, holding my screams inside. There she was—a warrior. Not merely enduring life, but loving it…and loving me.   

Her soft hands outstretched to take mine—warm, comforting. I was young back then. 

How are the boys treating you? How are you feeling?

Let me tell you about Jesus.

And then her lips parted, her eyes crinkled and danced. She grinned.

It was always there to greet me, no matter how she felt.

Her smile was the best.




Please, Jesus, let me be like her.

Please, Jesus, let me carry her grace through affliction.

Please, Jesus, help us to endure a world without her smile. 




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