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Wednesday, May 9, 2007

The Fragrance of God

(1 Corinthians 15:28) "...so that God may be all in all."

As we prepare for Mother's Day, many of us will have mixed emotions. Some of us will share this time with our mothers, some it will be a memory and some it may be a distant heartache.

God has brought me through one of many journey's. At a loss of what I dreamt would be a precious childhood, God had to teach me first that He was my "all in all". My Mother, my Father, my every need. Not until I found my comfort in Him did I see that He had given me four wonderful people that surrounded me with the love of a mother. My own mom and I rekindled a relationship after many years apart. My step mom is just like a mom to me, and I have been so blessed with wonderful mother-in-law's. The fourth mom is who I want to introduce to you today and share her memory with you for she was my savior.

My grandmother.

In Honor of Mother's Day.

The Fragrance of Mom or Was it God?

I do not remember her not being a part of my life. She was my soul and sustained the pieces of my childhood where my parents were unable. She was a fresh spirit sent from Heaven to plant the seed of the Almighty. She, however, would never see the harvest. Some of us knew her and called her by the name "Grandma". To me, she was "Mom" just as my dad called her. That name has stuck with me, even in the remembrance of her.

My earliest memory of my grandmother was when I was three years old. I would crawl out of my bed and find her rocking in her worn green rocking chair sipping her coffee and reading her Bible. There, I sat with her, and inhaled the fragrance of roses, a reminder of how "mom" always smelled. The house was still, as it slept, so I could have her all to myself. There, she would pull me up onto her lap and sing You Are My Sunshine, a song that has become uniquely special for my daughter and me; A memory not forgotten.

As I grew older, life became hard. My special mom had to take care of my younger cousins when my aunt died at age 29 of cancer. Mom was my rock and my foundation. She was the only stability in my young life. I remember my real mom saying at times that life was not all rose-colored. But I later learned it could be. And it was my grandmother that taught me that.

I even remember, as I sat with her in her rocking chair, a rose-colored plate on the table next to her chair. I used to pick this plate up, look through it and giggle how pink the world looked. My grandmother would always say, "What a rose-color picture of the world it paints", as she smiled.

It was not until I was an adult that I learned the sacrifice my grandmother made in coming to take care of my sister and me during those young years. I learned that she had to sell her home and move from another state to come and live with us and care for us during a time that my parents were struggling. It was this selfless act of God’s calling on her life that would later save me from spiritual death.

As I grew up, my grandmother preached the gospel, rarely using words. She was a living example of Christ in her life. Many times we sat together and watched the 700 Club or sang gospel songs while she played the piano. She would take me to church. These acts of a calling ended up being acts of love to a little lost girl.

I also remember something she taught me. Although, it took many years to really grasp the meaning. And I cherish her words now. When someone was mean or ugly, she would say, "Silence is Golden". I never really understood what she meant other than maybe I should just be quiet. It is much easier said, than done! I was one of those children (did I say I outgrew it?) that always had to have the last word.

Eventually I saw my grandmother all through the "Golden" part of that "Silence". What she meant was that His silence was a gift and sometimes it is His answer to my prayer. But it has taken me many years to finally see that when we become confident in that "Silence" of our Abba, we will have reached that level of intimacy that Jesus had with His Abba.

Even though, my mom taught me the tenderness of silence and the beauty of the rose-colored world, I still had to face the reality of a broken fallen world. I would soon learn that dreams could be shattered just like our rose-colored plate. I later learned that my favorite rose-colored plate had been broken. Soon my life became a challenge and I would sometimes think back to that special plate and how I wished I had it, to look through. That plate could change my outlook on how things were turning out in my own life, even if that special plate was a fantasy.

Maybe it is when our rose- colored plates are shattered into a million pieces that we begin to find our Abba Father. Maybe that is what "Mom" meant when she would add to her comment, "There is a more beautiful Painter out there, who paints our world."

Yes, maybe life is not all rosy, and maybe we are just left with the fragrance..........but maybe it is the fragrance of roses… or maybe something better.

Thank you "Mom" for planting the beautiful rose bush so long ago…it is blooming now…. and it is blooming for Abba….just like you did.

Was that really my grandma that smelled of roses or
Had it been God all along?

In memory of Margaret Franklin…. My precious grandmother…. Or "Mom"

Let Him be your all in all… and savor the gifts He has given you

Happy Mother's Day to all you Mom's… even if you are a mom in spirit.


6 little hearts from you...:

Sharon @ Little Lessons said...

Because my name is Sharon, dear hubby often calls me his 'rose' ... and perhaps my optimism comes from being a 'rose' that wears rose colored glasses.

Taking my half-full rose-colored glass and drinking in His goodness today.

Thanks for reminding me to do that.

Denise said...

Bless you, bless you. This made my heart smile.

christas mom said...

the one thing i remember most of 'mom' is her always smelling like roses. in her 70's, she taught me how to play kick the can.
I just wish she could have been around when we came to know Jesus. but I think she had faith that her prayers would someday go answered. Its been a life lesson to me to remember that we must always pray for our family even if we wont be there to see it. and to have faith that God listens and will bless those we lift up to Him.

Lynn Donovan said...


This was just awesome. I miss my grandma.... Love you, Lynn

Gretchen said...

What an amazing post. I, too, was partially raised by my grandma, who is 81 and living 1500 miles away from me. We still speak every week on the phone, and she and I held each other up through the loss of my mom 8 years ago. Though not as soft and godly as the Grandma you describe, I see so much of how God used her to soften the edges of life for me. Thank you for the beauty of your remembrance. Blessings!

Linda said...

Oh, this is one of my favorite posts I've ever read! It is so poignant and poetic and full of emotion. What a blessing and tribute to her. You have risen up and called her "blessed."