Yesterday I drove down to Waco to see my grandmother and spend some time with my parents. My grandmother was born in 1917 and lives in an assisted living home. Over the summer she was sick and had to go to the skilled nursing side of the home but returned back to her apartment just last week. Her mind is sharp and her hearing good despite the weakness in her legs and her inability to get move around without her wheelchair. My mom met me there and we visited in my grandmother's room until time for her to go to lunch. My mom and I walked her down to the dining hall and over to her table. They have assigned seating where she lives so I got to meet the people she eats with everyday. It turns out that one of them is a man that was good friends with my grandparents when they used to live out at the lake. This friend and his wife, my grandparents, and another couple used to go camping together. This would have been during my grandparents' retirement years. My granddad died in 1983 when I was in college. I adored him. Anyway, the friend at my grandmother's table started talking about my granddad. He said they were almost twins because their birthdays were just a few days apart and they were born the same year. (Which I thought was a sweet and funny thing to be said by a man in his 90's!) He then told me something I've never heard before -- he spent the day with my granddad the day before he died. They were doing some volunteer work at their church. They were putting a gable (?) on a roof. He said usually when they were working when he would try to go up the ladder my granddad would push him aside and go up the ladder himself. On that day, however, my granddad let his friend go up the ladder. At 5:00 the next morning, he said, my grandmother called him to tell him my granddad was gone.
I don't really know why, but I was fascinated to listen to this friend talking about my granddad. Maybe it's because I have not talked about him or heard new stories about him in such a long time. I love to talk to my grandmother and to hear stories about the past. She's the last grandparent that Johnny and I have left.
After we left my grandmother I went out to my parents' house and they fixed lunch for me. It was delicious, of course. After we finished lunch we played Sequence for a while then I had to head home. My parents were going after I left yesterday to work at their church serving food to homeless people.
Interesting -- my grandparents spent their time in retirement working and volunteering at their church. Johnny's grandparents gave land to their church and his grandparents worked in the church as well. Johnny's grandmother died in church after she finished teaching her Sunday School class that she had taught for decades. Both my parents and Johnny's parents are spending their retirement years involved in their churches and giving of their time.
What a legacy! I am privileged to carry on that which was passed down to me.
Serving the King,