Monday, February 15, 2010

Leaving a Legacy

My 87 year old Grandma Myrtle passed away Friday evening after a very long and valiant battle with cancer. She was surrounded by family when she passed and my dad, sister and mother who were there said it was very peaceful and beautiful.

My grandmother was such a wonderful woman and she will be greatly missed. She was an amazing wife, mother, friend and grandmother. It was so hard to watch her suffering at the end as the cancer invaded her body and filled her days with pain. However, she had the most positive attitude throughout it all and was so anxious to go and meet her maker. She reassured the rest of us that she was more than ready to meet Jesus and was thankful for the extra years God had granted her as she battled her cancer. She was ready to be done with cancer and ready to meet Jesus. She described hearing the most beautiful hymns she has ever heard in her last days when she would drift off to sleep. She also would reach out in her sleep and we can only imagine she was reaching for Jesus.

Grandma was someone who always lit up the room with her smile. She cared so much for others and was a great example of selfless love. Some of my favorite memories of her involve playing in her basement where she taught ceramic classes. I also spent many hours sitting in her living room visiting with her as a child and now as an adult while my kids played with the same toys I played with as a child! Growing up she always had these cookies with maple frosting in them that I loved. She also had a growth chart on the woodwork of her home and it was so fun to see how much you had grown since you had last visited!

Grandma was a light for Christ. She served Him in all she did and did so humbly. She displayed unconditional love that radiated from her soul. I am so thankful that we moved back a year and a half ago and had been able to spend more time with her. I am thankful that my boys have such great memories of her.

As I was thinking about her passing and how she touched so many lives I was reminded of a song by Nichole Nordeman. The song is titled Legacy and describes my Grandma so well.

I don't mind if you've got something nice to say about me
And I enjoy an accolade like the rest
You could take my picture and hang it in a gallery
Of all who's who and so-n-so's that used to be the best
At such'n'such ... it wouldn't matter much

I won't lie, it feels alright to see your name in lights
We all need an 'Atta boy' or 'Atta girl'
But in the end I'd like to hang my hat on more besides
The temporary trappings of this world

I want to leave a legacy
How will they remember me?
Did I choose to love? Did I point to You enough
To make a mark on things?
I want to leave an offering
A child of mercy and grace who
blessed your name unapologetically
And leave that kind of legacy

I don't have to look too far or too long awhile
To make a lengthly list of all that I enjoy
It's an accumulating trinket and a treasure pile
Where moth and rust, thieves and such will soon enough destroy

Not well traveled, not well read, not well-to-do or well bred
Just want to hear instead, "Well Done" good and faithful one...

I just know that as she walked through those pearly gates of heaven that Jesus was right there to greet her and He said to her, well done good and faithful one. I am so thankful for the legacy she has left behind.

It is hard to be days away from meeting our child and knowing he or she will not have those memories of Grandma. However, I am confident he or she will learn what a beautiful woman their grandmother was from those of us who were blessed to be touched by her.

We miss you Grandma, but my soul smiles when I think of you dancing with Jesus. I also look forward to being with you again someday.


Cindy and company said...

Becky, Richard, and Boys,

So sorry for your loss. How wonderful it is to KNOW where she is. How marvelous it is that she touched so many while she was here. How beautiful to have the hope of seeing her once again. YOu are in our prayers. The Hogans

Stacy Nelson said...

Well said Becky. She was truly "one-of-a-kind". What wonderful memories we all have of time with her. She left us all such a tremendous example of how to live and die with grace, beauty, hope and faith. Now we have a beautiful angel watching over us!