Many years ago, when I was young and unmarried, I stayed with my grandparents for a week while my grandpa was in the hospital. I paused in my trip home to teach Vacation Bible School for my grandma so she could spend her time with my grandpa.
He’d had another heart episode. In the last years of his life, Grandpa had 11 major heart attacks. I had no idea how special that time was for me. As a young person, I didn’t understand how tired my grandpa was by then.
My grandpa loved to tell stories
I took over my grandma’s class and joyfully taught the little kids. Then I would visit my grandpa and tease him about coming home soon. We talked about the man I would marry. And we laughed together.
At the end of the week, Grandpa was allowed to come home. I rejoiced and sat on the floor by his chair as I have for most of my life. Hugging them both, I left my grandparents, driving the four hours left on my way home. I didn’t realize it then, but that was the last time I saw my grandpa alive. I loved him and felt precious to him. He was precious to me.
My grandparents had a wonderful relationship
I remember Grandpa and Grandma reading the Bible aloud every morning. I listened and tried not to drift off into sleep. Their time together was precious for them. and they never parted without saying, “I love you.” It might be the last time they spoke to each other. When they prayed together in the morning, they would name each child, each spouse, each grandchild, grand spouse, and great-grandchild. Listening to them pray, I was impatient to get on, but they lingered over each name with love and care.
After I arrived home, I slept a long time, refreshing myself after the extra time with my grandparents. Little did I know that Grandpa and Grandma spent the night discussing their lives together. They gave thanks as they realized the dreams they had lived and set the task for Grandma for her prayers in the future without Grandpa. They talked about when they met and their first home. They spoke of the birth of their children and their first grandchild. They stayed true to each other through sickness and health, in want and riches.
Dandelions and Other Sermons were born
Then in the morning, as the day dawned, Grandma called the ambulance to take grandpa across the street to the hospital. Then she called her kids to come to say goodbye to their father. Grandpa died a few days later. After 50 years together, Grandma started her journey alone.
Finding her devotions challenging to continue without the company of her partner, Grandma decided to spend a year creating sermons. That’s where this new book comes in. Fifty-two sermons, one for each week, with a total of 375 pages, Dandelions and Other Sermons is a gem. Written in 1980, the sermons reflect the times and her heritage. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did. Available now on Amazon.