Thursday, September 15, 2011

Remembering Grandma

Today I turn my blog over to my husband and a tribute to his Grandma Smith.


A Tribute –

Grandma and Grandpa with Brian and brother Tim. 1964
  
My grandmother Francis Smith died peacefully on September 14, 2011.  I write the following words as a tribute to her and to the legacy that I see in my family.  My Grandmother was 98 years old.  As long as I can remember I can remember Grandma.  Six short years ago she, and our family said goodbye to my grandfather, Don Smith.  Grandma and Grandpa were married 71 years!  They are too funny, when we asked them on their 70th anniversary if we could do something to celebrate they said, “no, wait till 75, it will be worth celebrating then.”  Grandpa and Grandma Smith never wanted to draw attention to themselves. They come from the generation that was glad to help, serve and not complain or make a fuss about things. 

I have fond memories of the two of them.  In their retirement years they would spend their summers living with our family and helping on our ranch.  The summer was filled with projects, painting, staining, weeding, cooking, cleaning and so much more.  They worked so hard, but they couldn’t have been happier.  Grandpa had a knack for picking out good vegetables and produce.  Grandma had a knack for turning that freshly picked our purchased produce into a great meal or a tasty dessert.  These were fond memories for me growing up.
I am thankful that I had a lot of time with Grandpa and Grandma.  Family was important.  Church was important.  I remember many conversations with my Grandpa about the church.  While we were working around the ranch we would always have on Christian radio programs.  One that I remember specifically was “The Christian Jew Hour”  Jews who had come to know Christ.   As I grew up and became a pastor he asked me one question many times!  What kind of Baptist are you?  There are over 50 varieties of Baptists so I can see why he would ask.  I would explain we were a part of the old Swedish Baptist church.  Oh that’s right he would say.

One thing I remember about Grandpa and Grandma is that they were in love.  Their first date was when they were both in their teens.  He took Grandma to the movie.  He had no car so he walked  across town, walked her to the movie and then walked her home afterward. Grandpa always told that story with a twinkle in his eye.  It was a twinkle that was  there for 71 years.  Grandma was his first and lifetime love.  I thank God for their commitment to each other and to marriage and to God.  In a world that is lacking so many things their lives stood out and were an authentic testimony of their faith to all who knew them.  Thank you Grandpa and Grandma Smith for living out your faith!  Thank you for fulfilling your marriage vows!  Thank you for your example and your legacy!  You are together now in the presence of our Lord.  Well done good and faithful servants.  We will miss you but now we must carry the torch that you lit in our families and have passed on to us.

As your relationship started with that walk to the movie and back so many years ago, Grandpa had one more assignment.  On Wednesday September 14th Grandpa ‘Walked Grandma home” for the last time. I will miss you both very much. I pray that I can live my life as you did to honor our Lord.
As often as I hear this song, I will think of how blessed I am to have grandparents like you.

Your Grandson,  Brian

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