Proverbs 31:30 ESV
Galatians 5:22-23 ESV
The women in my family have a very blessed gift that God has given us.
They are women of faith.
God’s hand was and is ON them.
They’ve been blessed with incredible health and longevity.
When I was preparing for this lesson I thought of one of my great-grandmothers, I asked my Mom to ‘fact check’ my memory. What’s remarkable about that is that my Mom is 94 years old. She remembered intricate details about her grandmother who was born roughly ten years after the Civil War ended.
When she was born the main method of transportation was horse and buggy. Children didn’t have television or radio so during the summer they played outside once their chores were done.
They had an ice house where they kept ice the men had chipped from the pond during the winter.
During the summer months a man would go to their house once a week to sell them large chunks of ice.
Inside the kitchen they had an ice box for the ice but it wasn’t electric.
When it was hot they used a paper fan or a shade tree to stay cool.
They cooked on a wood stove.
They didn’t have indoor plumbing so they had an outhouse. They also needed to dig a well so they had a natural water source near the house. To take a bath they had to carry water inside and heat it on the wood stove.
They didn’t have electric wash machines or dryers so they used a wash tub and a clothesline.
Farmhouses didn’t have a telephone so people walked to their neighbor’s house to talk to them.
Most farmhouses used oil lanterns in the evening.
My great-grandmother had a petal powered sewing machine that she used to make clothes for her family.
They sheered sheep for wool and she used a spinning wheel to make yarn. I might add her crochet pieces were the best I’ve ever seen.
All of that is a lot for me to take in because when I do a load of wash by throwing it in the washer I call that ‘work’.
I knew my great-grandmother pretty well. She knew my name. That didn’t mean much to me when I was eight years old but today that means a great deal to me.
She was a tiny woman standing 5’ tall and she might have weighed 90 pounds. She had very tiny feet (which is where I got my tiny feet). I am 4’11” tall and I can wear a women’s size 4.5 or a 5 shoe but it’s nearly impossible to find that size on the rack today. Thankfully, there are women who live halfway around the world who have tiny feet so I can order shoes online to fit me.
My great-grandmother had seven children who lived to adulthood…five girls and two boys. She had thirteen grandchildren and an untold number of great-grandchildren. From my grandmother alone she had six great-grandchildren. According to the count we can recall she had 25 great-grandchildren.
I was one of her great-grandchildren.
I remember she was a most excellent cook. She canned her own food from her garden. And oh my, she made cake with sweet thick frosting that melted in your mouth! She made hand churned homemade ice cream in the summer. She made beautiful hand-sown quilts and dresses, and she had an absolutely wonderful giggle. She went to church all her life and for many many years she was the pianist.
She lived in Randolph County, Missouri all her adult life.
She is part of God’s story. I think of her when I read Proverbs 31:30, “Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”
When I think of my great-grandmother I don’t remember her for charm or beauty (although she was a very pleasant person who was easy on the eye). I remember God’s fruit in her and her fruitfulness to God.
Galatians 5:22-23 tells us, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”
The fruit of the Spirit of God was clearly evident in her life.
I remember her love.
I remember she was a person of peace.
She was long-suffering and she was patient.
She had a most excellent way of expressing quiet joy. Her giggle would fill the room with smiles.
I remember she was kind to everyone.
She was a gentle soul and I never saw her lose her temper (neither did my Mother).
God was faithful to her and she was faithful to God.
Her goodness was evident to everyone who knew her.
I count myself blessed that I had six great-grandparents who lived ‘in my time’. All of them were born around 1875 and all of them were around when I was born 75 years later. Many of them lived to see the late 1950’s and early 1960’s come.
God has been very good to me and I count knowing Great-Grandma Green as a blessing.
Today’s Spiritual Practice is: Count Your Blessings
Write down how God has blessed you and thank God for the blessings!
In God, Deborah