It wasn’t what my Nana did; it was how she made me feel.
As the oldest of six kids, I was a like a second mom at home. I took care of my siblings constantly. I handled things, especially keeping everyone in check.
Nana would come and get me, though. She’d rescue me away, picking me up in her long white Cadillac. Along the way to her white country house, she’d pull into a rock drive, straight into my favorite place, Little George’s! It was a small convenience store marked by a huge pig out front!
“Pick out any candy you want, Kelly! It doesn’t matter how big it is,” she’d say.
Nana was like this, always giving (taking me shopping, getting me crabs at her house, finding the best corn for us to eat). Always showing up (making a point to get me). Always wanting to be with me (playing cards, making me clean her house – ha!, giving me ice cream).
Nana certainly was super generous, but — I will tell you — it wasn’t what she gave me that blessed me so much. It was how she made me feel. She was consistently patient, thoughtful and welcoming. She was that way with everyone.
Nana is gone now, but I still want to be like her. She never said a bad word about anyone. I tried to talk ill about her friend, who herself, was “a griper”. Nana stopped me. Ironically, that same day, fire ants went flaming up my leg at the lady’s house. It seemed to remind me that. . . mean words do bite!
Nana didn’t talk love, she showed it.
“Love is patient, love is kind.” (1 Cor. 13:4)
I want to be patient and kind in a world that is rushed and panicked. I want to be love, rather than constantly talking about it to my kids. I want to be kind even when things with my husband get tense.
I want people to know me more by how I make them feel, than by the Christianese I profess with my mouth. I’m not sure I’m there yet.
May they know us by our love. Jesus didn’t talk about love 24/7; He IS love. What if we were to love in such a way, people felt it in the fabric of their being?
Prayer: God, only you can help us love more. Help us to experience your love, to show love. Help us to walk in your grace, to release grace. Help us to live by you, to love by you and to walk away from mean words. We don’t want to just be professors of your word, we want to be possessors of it and releasors of it.
You say, “Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.” (Jo. 15:4)
Help us remain in you, for then the fruit of love will come easy!