And when she started in on the stories about how tiny Daddy was as a baby, you could practically see the dresser drawer he slept in and the little doll clothes he wore.
So, you can imagine the kinds of letters she wrote to her children. One of my favorites is her party invitation to fill in a ditch. She promises games for the children and wheelbarrow and shovel racing for the adults.
In another letter, postmarked March 25, 1978, she wishes my parents a happy Easter. In it, she writes about how she cherishes her memories from the Easter of 1977 – the year the two of them dedicated their lives to serving God and were baptized. That Easter season, Grandma’s “dream of a lifetime” came true, she writes, before she goes on to encourage them:
“… we’ll come in contact with many things we don’t understand but read your Bible, keep your eyes on Jesus and your hand in his and he will take you through to the end.”
She wrote all of those things before sickness took her husband and diabetes took her legs, before terrorists slammed airplanes into the World Trade Center, before tsunamis raked away entire towns and villages and radiation threatened to poison the survivors.
Now, all these years later, I still find comfort and wisdom in her long-ago letter.
She reminds me to pray not only for protection, but for strength.
Grandma spent most of her life trying to crawl into God’s arms and trying to share his love with others. She was OK with not understanding everything, OK with not knowing how every story ended.
She simply trusted the Author.