Older women…encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, (Titus 2:3,5 NASB).
As far as I can remember, my Grandma Edwards was always old. She didn’t have many material possessions, but she had a sharp mind, a determined spirit, and buckets full of love. She was a small-framed woman who raised a family of five children during the depression by running a country general store and harvesting produce from her garden. Her waist-long, tightly braided hair wound around her head like a crown, and her teeth came out at night.
Another thing that always amazed me as a little girl was Grandma’s undergarments. She wore knit baggy underwear that hung down to her knees and an equally attractive T-shirt to match. I never saw these undergarments anywhere except on Grandma’s clothesline, so I decided there must be a special “Grandma store” that sold baggy underwear just for grandparents.
Grandma never drove a car, but she would ring up the grocery store and a box of supplies would magically appear on her back stoop. Grandma’s house was filled with the aroma of strong coffee and fresh-baked biscuits. There was also the scent of salve, which was the cure-all for any ailment, and of snuff, which she would sneak between her cheek and gum when she thought I wasn’t looking.
Each summer I would spend a week at Grandma’s house. The highlight of our day was watching Perry Mason on her big black-and-white television. We drank Coca-Cola from cold glass bottles and ate peanut butter crackers. Grandma had a standing date with Perry each day. If someone “came a’callin’ ” during that time, they knew to pull up a chair, grab a Coke, and wait until the verdict was in before conversation could commence.
During my weeks with Grandma, there were no trips to fast-food restaurants or shopping sprees at the mall. That’s just not what grandmas were for. So what did I do for seven days? I did what Grandma did (except dip snuff). I made biscuits, shelled lima beans, canned vegetables for the following winter, and learned how to sew.
When I was six-years-old, Grandma taught me how to turn a square piece of daisy-covered fabric into a gathered apron with a big bow in the back. At seven, we transformed a rectangular piece of floral cloth into a jumper with big ball buttons on the straps. At eight, we conquered the zipper.
Without realizing it, my grandmother was being a Titus 2 woman. “Older women…encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home.” It was her inheritance to me.
Grandma didn’t leave me a sum of money when she passed away, but she left something much more valuable. God used her to show me that leaving an inheritance to our children is so much more than money in the bank, well-invested mutual funds, and valuable heirlooms. It is leaving them memories of simple times together, showing them on how to become men and women of God, and leaving a legacy that causes them to “rise up and call you blessed.”
What sort of legacy will you leave behind? What will your children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews inherit from you?
Dear Lord, help me to leave a godly heritage and invest love today that will multiply tomorrow. Help me to always remember what is important—not money in the bank, but God in the heart. Help me to be the type of woman that we read about in Titus 2 who exemplifies what You desire.
In Jesus’ Name,
What do You Think?
Read Luke 1:36-45, 56 and note ways that Elizabeth encouraged Mary.
What are some ways that you can be an example to younger women in your sphere of influence?
Let’s celebrate. Click over to my blog page and tell me the name of one woman who has been an example of a godly woman to you.
If you are a mother or grandmother, one of the most important things you can do is to pray for your children and grandchildren. I’ve created a small inexpensive laminated prayer card with Scripture to pray for children in the most important areas of their lives. And if you are a mom who needs a bit of encouragement, check out my book Being a Great Mom-Raising Great Kids. It has been encouraging moms around the world for over ten years!