Monday, February 20, 2017

There's only Grace

A couple things happened in my family this past weekend.   Not in my family as in my kids and husband, but as in my extended family.

First my mom had a pacemaker put in and that was crazy.    She pent the night in the hospital for the first time since 1966 when she gave birth to my youngest brother.  In all of her near 88 years she had only been in the hospital three times — to give birth to three children.    She was all full of joy telling me about her adventure and how wonderful the people were and how great the hospital was.  I want to be more like her.  

And then last night, she told me this:

My brother, who will be 52 in a month, and suffered two severe strokes this past year, hopped on a plane for a 48 hour trip (including layovers and flight times) to go to Madagascar and marry the African niece of his nurse.   

Yeah, you might want to read it again.  A lot to digest!

Woah!  SO, this 30 something eager to have children gorgeous girl is now my sister-in-law and my brother, a life-time bachelor, might actually make me an aunt after all.

There reason I’m sharing this with you is because I am so grateful for my parents and the atmosphere of grace in which we have always lived.  I’m pretty sure that not being invited to (much less told about) the wedding of an African woman twenty year’s someone’s junior, would cause the family some stress.

Not mine.  My mom would say she is “tickled” and “thrilled.”   She is excited to start corresponding with her and can’t believe the good fortune.  Another grandchild would be an amazing gift — enthicity and race don’t matter not at all, which is pretty unique for someone of her generation.   She has been praying or my wayward brother for decades, and this girl is a CHRISTIAN.   An answer to her prayer.

I’m excited for him too.  Despite his struggles with alcoholism, I’ve always loved my brother Nate.  He has personality and charm and a sense of humor that, even after two strokes, is still spot on and he cracks me up all the time.

 want to offer grace and forgiveness as the norm.  I want to think of others before myself.

What would it look like at your job if you always extended that kind of grace to everyone?  What if our first thought was grace in our personal lives … to family members, neighbors, friends.

I’ve gotten used to it over the years, but this weekend I was reminded that when it comes to other people…. we need to live a life where we can say to everyone around us, “There’s only grace.”

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