I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. II Timothy 1:5
Living next door to my faithful grandmother (and grandfather) for my first eight years was the initial demonstration of grace for my fledgling faith. I watched them give away a great portion (if not most) of their income and worldly goods to others in need. Grandma hosted a neighborhood prayer group long before it was trendy, and my brother and I often accompanied her runs with baskets for the sick and hungry. Grandpa carried his Bible with him to work and led us in daily family devotions.
So, I suppose, it was just natural for their children, my uncles and mom, to follow in their footsteps. While Papa taught us practical things, Momo led us in following Jesus. We watched our family’s faith lived out and applied daily. I grew up thinking that was the way everybody lived.
My mom and dad are both gone now, so I set for myself a task that I have literally kept on the shelf for several years—going through Momo’s journals. This summer would be the time, I told myself. Enough space has elapsed since their passing that I can objectively read what Momo recorded through the years.
I think I have been hesitant, anxious (yes, anxious) about what she may have written about me—or any of us. Had she noted disapproval, disappointment, concern? Was she pleased with us? It was time to pull the books off the shelf and brave the consequences. What I discovered should not have surprised me.
Page after page was covered with her original studies (replete with Bible verses) from years of exploring the Word: the Mystery of Prayer, Faith, Waiting on the Lord, the Nature of God, Gratitude, God’s Love, Children, were just a few with diagrams to illustrate her thoughts. Momo copied verses from traditional hymns that seemed to have been part of her meditations. And there were prayer lists. Rarely did she mention personal matters or names except in the context of prayer.
I knew Momo was a woman of great spiritual depth, but I am just discovering how much of her days she must have spent in prayer and study. Actually, I didn’t need to know—it was evident in her life. And she blessed her world.
Father, when I think of the spiritual heritage I’ve been given, I am grateful for your abundance of blessing. But I am so very deficient in likeness to the godly women who’ve been my example. Give me time to grow more like them in their likeness to you. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.