Saturday, December 29, 2007

In Memory

Hubby's precious grandma died on Wednesday. This is ironically also our middle dd's birthday. What a loss this dear woman will be in our family! As I sat thinking about things during today's funeral, I remembered that she was the first one who accepted me unconditionally into hubby's family. I felt a natural affinity with her as if I were her very own granddaughter and not an "in-law". She certainly treated me as such. How many people came up to tell us that her my children, her only great-grandchildren, were the joy of her life and how often she bragged on them? Too many to count. She was a pastor's wife and was married to grandpa for 60 years. They were truly best friends. One of my favorite funny things she said to me years ago was this, "You know, in the Bible, it says a wife is supposed to be a helpmate. But I'm pretty sure I've been more of a hinder-mate." She was always self-effacing!

At her funeral today, a poem was shared.

Success (usually attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson, but not neccesarily his writing)
To laugh often and much;
To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children;
To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends;
To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others;
To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition;
To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.
This is to have succeeded.

The funny thing is as I listened to the pastor read this poem, every single phrase matched up with grandma. Every. Single. Phrase. But I would add one more line to that poem. To have been humble enough to accept the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and to spend one's life sharing it --this is to have succeeded. And a success Oneta Louiza Crites Noel most certainly was.

3 comments:

The 5 Adventurers said...

A life well lived indeed!

Annette said...

What a beautiful person she was! Thanks for sharing that poem as well. We are praying for you guys!

Stacy said...

Oh, Joni... I'm sorry to hear this. What a beautiful tribute to her.

(((Hugs))),

~Stacy