Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Legacy In Death

My heart is wavy waters today. Grandma F has passed away.  Our hearts rejoice, she didn’t suffer in sickness, and now she is forever with her Lord and Savior.

We feel sad too. Growing up, she was very special to me, well, because, she’s a grandma.  We didn’t know each other very well though due to the fact that she processed life through the lens of fact and had a careful and meek personality. To know me at all is to know that my life is recklessly processed through emotion and I wasn’t naturally blessed with meekness.

However, soon after Grandpa died, she broke her hip.  She wanted to move back into her home but needed someone to live with her.  This was at the time we were preparing to move to Ethiopia and we needed a place to live. It made sense and she opened her home to us. After about 2 months she was back to her independent self and needed us for very little. She said we were welcome to stay.  As our departure date was pushed off repeatedly, we would have a conversation that went something like this. “Grandma, it looks like it is going to be longer than we thought.  We’re happy to find somewhere else to live.”  She would respond in a firm voice, “Kids, don’t be silly.” And so we stayed, for 18 months.

After moving to Ethiopia, I realized that I missed her, not as a grandma I didn’t know well, but like I missed a friend.

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After our time in the US this summer, we were once again saying our goodbyes. One of the last things she said, “When you come back again, if I’m still around, you are welcome to stay with me.”

Death is a time to stop and think in thankfulness about how we’ve been blessed. All of our grandparents have left a deep and beautiful legacy for us.  I’ve heard said that each generation rides on the shoulders of their parents, who are riding on the shoulders of their’s. Each able to go a little higher because of the sacrifices of the lives lived before. Our ancestors have been men and women of God, serving and loving in Biblical ways. 

We grieve here in Ethiopia, but not as those who have no hope. (1 Thessalonians 4:13-14)

The line from this song has been echoing through my head since I have heard of her death.“No guilt in life, no fear in death, this is the power of Christ in me”

In Christ Alone

In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm

What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand

In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless Babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save

'Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again

And as He stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny

No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
Til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I stand


sarah.flyingkites said...

Been thinking and praying for you as I'm sure it's hard to be away from home...

Rachel said...

Praying for you, Amy...what a hard thing :( Love you tons!

Anonymous said...

Our thoughts and prayers are with you also. We appreciated your grandma. she was always a delight to have along on our CCRC trips. I think the last one she was on was our trip to Gatlinburg. We took the Cades Cove trail and stopped at a little church. She sat down at the piano and we had us a little sing along! We will join her someday, keep pressing on!! Love, the gerbers

bri said...

That song is one of my absolute favorites. Love, love, love it! So sad for your loss. Thankful we have hope for the future!

Kristi said...

Yes yes yes! Praying you through!

Anonymous said...

Thought of you today at the funeral! Ron read part of your blog and that made it seem you were there! We will miss our Eunie in our widow group. She was such a blessing-a woman of grace! She did enjoy having you stay with her, as she said many times! Love you and yours! Mary K.

Anonymous said...

Amy, My heart goes out to you (and your family), losing your dear Grandma from afar. I am so thankful she shared your Hope. May you be able to grieve, reminisce and say goodbye in many different ways over the coming months and holidays.

I lost my closest Grandpa during the SARS epidemic, so I was quarantined and unable to return to the States for the funeral. At that time services weren't online, but Mom did send me a recording of it a month later. Whenever you do return to the States the next time do take time to go to the gravesite. Even though I had not been someone who put that much emphasis on formal rituals of funerals and such, there was something about the closure of seeing his gravesite that helped me move forward in the saying goodbye for this season.

Know you are prayed for from this corner. With sympathy. Stephany

Anonymous said...

Been thinking and praying for you this past week... cant be easy being away, but we wanted to lift you up in prayer! She was a very special lady, one we will never forget! Always so kind and full of love! Ill never forget the many times she popped in to drop something off or get something when I was babysitting for you kids. Thankful she was a grandma who could trust a babysitter like me with her precious grandkids!!!:) She always had a smile and friendly wave. Ill treasure those memories... thankful she went HOME without a struggle, and know she was always surrounded with a family who loved her just like she loved them! That is beautiful. That is a gift. Thankful you could live with her those many months, Im sure that gained you many more wonderful memories to take with you to Ethopia. Her memorry, her love will always live in your heart!! Praying for you, Amy! I just lost Grandpa Gerber in November. Trust me... I know the pain of letting go and saying goodbye. They are so very special. Oh the joy of knowing Heaven has them now and they are waiting for us!

Love you. Heidi