May 20, 2021: She Loved Me
“See how very much our Father loves us, for He calls us His children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know Him” (1 John 3:1, NLT).
Every summer, for the first 8 years of my life, our family drove from our home in the metro-Detroit area down to our family farm in Boone, N.C. My brother and I would wake up at dawn to spend the day traipsing through the woods, fishing, riding in Grandpa Jim’s old pickup and eating fudge-ripple ice cream with chocolate sauce. Those early years were the best.
Not long after I turned 9, we made that trip during a winter storm. Grandpa Jim, 65, had suffered a massive heart attack and stroke and died.
While our summer trips to Boone continued, I dreaded them. Grandma Annie had chores for me, criticized everything I did and publicly questioned the wisdom of eating my fudge-ripple treat. It seemed as if she detested me, and my heart began to grow cold.
Just before I turned 16, we again traveled to Boone. Grandma Annie had lost her battle with lung cancer. I went through the motions and attended the funeral. Imagine my surprise when the minister, neighbors and relatives shared stories of how my grandmother boasted about her smart, beautiful and gifted granddaughter.
It wasn’t until that moment, that I recognized my grandmother had been hurting following the death of her husband. As I thought about the Father’s love, I knew then that my grandmother loved me after all.
Father, thank You that You call us Your children. Amen.
Heidi A. Shoemaker is the executive assistant to the president and chief medical officer at Fort Hamilton Hospital, part of Kettering Adventist HealthCare in Ohio.
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