I received a gift today. It wasn’t shopped for, or purchased, or even wrapped. In fact, the giver had no idea that she was giving me something of immeasurable value.
A sweet little 7-year-old girl with great big eyes and a bow in her hair ran past me and jumped into the bed of her “Granny.” Hugs and kisses and tickles and giggles followed. Six decades difference in age. Best friends. “This is my granddaughter!” she proudly told me, and her face lit up for the first time in the two days I’d known her. It was the most I’d seen her smile, the most joyful I’d seen her look, and for several hours it seemed as though the pain that her cancer caused her went away – just like that!
It wasn’t until several hours later I found out that “Granny” was not related to this bright-eyed little girl with snow white sneakers and pink shoe laces. Her son married someone with children from a previous marriage. “But I love her as if she were my own! She IS my grandchild!” she told me. “And I make sure she knows I love her with all my heart!” Tears in her eyes. “She’s my pride and joy, a gift from God!”
I’m divorced myself, and one of my biggest fears while raising my sons alone was that I would meet someone who would not love my children. Or – what if my in-laws would not accept my sons? What if the children of my spouse did not accept me?
I’m now a fairly new Grandma to the cutest little 19-month-old on Planet Earth. But I was gifted with a front row seat this week, and got to watch a veteran Grandma show grace to a family by loving a little girl as if she were her own flesh and blood. I don’t know if I will ever have the opportunity to love anyone else’s children or grandchildren, but if God ever takes me down that road, I want to shower them with grace just like this Granny does. I want to love them so well that they are comfortable enough to jump right into my lap, wrap their pudgy little arms around my neck and feel accepted, comforted, safe, and loved!
In a world where people refuse to give grace, God often seems to have little ways of sending people into my life to be good examples. Examples of HIS grace. I hope I can be a Granny just like the one I met this week…..