Lawson writes . . . sharing thoughts and memories

December 4, 2010

My Overseer

Filed under: Uncategorized — lawsonjolly @ 5:00 am

The word overseer brings back flashes of someone who directs the work of other people.  In fact, that is part of the definition of the word overseer, but the purest definition is one who keeps watch over others.

I had an overseer in my life!  I don’t mean parents  . . . or a boss from certain jobs.  The overseer in my life was named Lamar.  He was my mother’s brother who lived with my grandmother.  With my parents, we lived in the large family home with Lamar and my grandmother . . . or at times we lived in the smaller home on the property.  But Lamar was always a presence in my boyhood.

Lamar was older than my mother, but he had always been a child.  He did not behave like a child, but presented himself physically as a strong man with a silent nature.  Although a full man in stature, his mind had never developed where he could attend school.  An accident in his infancy injured him.

Lamar lived in his own world and was happy.  He was a quiet man and extremely observant of all that transpired around him.  One of the most unusual and unexplained abilities he possessed was the identification of cars.  He could identify the make and model of all the cars that passed our home.  It was an ususual gift.

But what I recall most of Lamar was that I felt he was an overseer of my life.  He was a guardian and protector.  He was always in sight, wherever I might be playing.  It was as if he saw this as his role in life . . . looking after me.   However, not once do I ever remember his warning me, scolding me, or speaking words of correction to me.  He would just watch me, ready to step in if I had ever been in danger.

Through Lamar’s disability I learned much.  I learned at an early age how people react and often treat such a person.  Lamar and I would often walk down to the village.  And often there would be someone who made fun of him.  Even as a small boy, it made me angry.  It did not happen often because most people knew him well.  However, there were those times when a new person would be in town and ridicule him or attempt to get him to do something wrong.  I can recall leaving him and running home to tell my grandmother or mother.  They would be consumed with fury and race to the village to insure that such a person would never again fool with Lamar!

I would live in the home with Lamar until the fourth grade.  My grandmother’s health made it difficult for her to care for him for a period of time.  Lamar went to live in a special home in another town.  Later, when my grandmother was again able to care for him, Lamar indicated he would like to stay in this special home.  He would live out his days there.  Every Saturday my grandmother and other members of the family would visit with him and spend the day shopping, or on a picnic.  Many of these Saturdays I would go because Lamar was special to me.  He was such a blessing in my life and I dearly loved him.

Two thoughts come to me as I write about Lamar.  One is how insensitive many people are to those who seem different — whether physically, mentally, socially, or economically.  Regardless, we must remember that every person is loved by God.  If we have God in us, we must love and accept such a person.  Have you considered offering a silent prayer for that person, and when it is one with a disability, praying for their caregiver?

“Show proper respect to everyone . . . .”  (1 Peter 2:17)  “Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”  (1 John 4:11) 

Another thought comes to me.  Beyond Lamar as an overseer in my life, I have had a  constant Overseer who is always present.  He is ready to protect, guide, and counsel.  What a mighty God I have in my life!  I will give Him praise and thanks!

“The Lord watches over you . . . .”  (Psalm 121:5)  “For a man’s ways are in full view of the Lord.”  (Proverbs 5:21)



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