Lawson writes . . . sharing thoughts and memories

July 11, 2011

Grace

Filed under: Uncategorized — lawsonjolly @ 5:00 am

Grace is not a blue-eyed blond!  Grace is one of those characteristics that can describe the character of a person.  There have been, and are today, many people in my life that I would use the word “grace” to describe them.

My use of the word would describe a person who expressed a love toward me that was unmerited.  They did not have to express to me a benevolent spirit, love, consideration, or even forbearance.  But they did!  This does not imply that they responded to some desperate situation in my life, or that they were accepting me in spite of my short comings.  No, I mean they were simply people of grace and there was a time I was the recipient.  They had no reason to extent such love toward me, but they chose to do so.

I can never think of a person of grace without remembering Baboo!  I first met Baboo on a Saturday afternoon when I went to a church in view of a call to be the youth minister in that church.  It would be a weekend opportunity in the church while I was in seminary. 

The pastor of the church took me  to the home of Baboo and Nandy.  Those were the names they were called by their children, grandchildren, and almost everyone in town.  They lived directly across from the church.  They were expecting me.  Arrangements had been made for me to stay in their home during this visit.

They had prepared a bedroom for me with a bath.  It was a lovely, gracious home.  I immediately felt at home.  The lives of this couple were inseparable from the church.  For many years they had been respected members and served the church in many ways with faithfulness and commitment.  I would meet their three children — two of whose homes were on either side of their parents.  The third child lived only a few blocks away.  This home was the center of the family with grandchildren often staying all night — as well as spending time almost every day.

That weekend was the beginning of my becoming a part of this wonderful family.  Nandy was still working and was out of town often during the week.  Baboo accepted me as another child of theirs and expected from me the same consideration and response that she did from her adult children.

I was to live in that bedroom and serve the church.  There was never any thought of other housing arrangements.  The family wanted me to stay with them, and I desired to stay with them.  Baboo had explained that I could care for my own needs in preparing food, doing my laundry, and cleaning my bath and room.  However, I never did any of those chores.  Not because of my attitude, but Baboo, a lady of grace, always did it for me!  Over and over she expressed an underserved love toward me.

During the summer I worked full-time for the U.S. Agriculture Bureau, measuring cotton and peanuts.  My work schedule was erratic.  I would go to the fields early in the morning while it was cool.  I would come home during the middle of the day, and then return later in the afternoon to continue work in the fields.  Baboo was always up very early to prepare my breakfast, and would save dinner for me in the evenings.  She would even sit with me while I ate to talk about my day.  She would care for grandchildren during the day, teach piano lessons, do church work, and yet she was always there to care for me.

She never expected anything in return for all she did for me.  She and Nandy refused to allow me to pay room and board during those summer months when I lived with them full-time.  She always had time for me.  She was a counselor and guardian to me.  She never meddled, but gave the assurance that she was available at any time to talk and give encouragement or advice.

It took me some years before I realized how much she taught me about grace.  A person of grace, I believe, is one from whom kind and loving acts proceed.  And those expressions are pure and sincere.  They are extended with graciousness and loving-kindness.  That was Baboo!  She and Nandy will always be a part of my life.  God blessed me so much through the grace that was expressed in that home and family.

Grace is that marvelous characteristic that I believe can come only from the God of grace.  God’s grace is that unmerited favor of God toward man.  God’s grace is that undeserved acceptance and love toward us.  I have been a recipient of His grace.  I know that Baboo had received it.  God’s grace in her caused her to extend grace to me.  I trust that God’s grace in me –which resulted in my salvation — causes me to be a person of grace.

Be thankful today for those people who show you grace —  but most of all receive His grace!  It is the need of our life!  His grace, when accepted, changes our life forever!  And we can become people of grace and love toward others.

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God. (Ephesians 2:8)

Lawson

 

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