Before we get too far away from furlough, I want to look back at some of the most meaningful times during furlough: time spent with grandparents. If I haven't mentioned before just how much we adore and enjoy our grandparents, let me mention it now. They pray for us, spoil us when we're around, share years of wisdom and experience, and have helped to shape the people we've become.
|Terrill with both grandmas in Blountstown.|
One way that our grandmas have equipped us to live in Africa is by modeling generosity and care for the needy. Even today, grandma Anna continues to quilt beautiful blankets to be donated to the Ik. When distributing them, we think of her and know that much prayer has been put into them. Since I have an affinity for the Ik elderly (and since their skin is thinner), they are the happy recipients of these quilts. Alice (above) had been asking for a blanket since last year. When she saw me pull this beautiful creation out, she hugged it tight and said a prayer of thanks to God. Then, while we sat and talked to her son around the fire, she wrapped herself up. It was no small gift.
|My dad's parents (Vernon & Donna Gingerich) came to visit us several times in Tallahassee. One thing I appreciate about them is their ability to have good, meaningful conversations and encourage us to live a righteous life. Although life has not always been easy for them, they've used the lessons they've learned to encourage their family. How dear to have grandparents who want to invest in us!|
Here I am with my maternal grandma (Doris Stutzman) on my right and my grandma Donna on my left. Recently, grandma Doris has uprooted from Berlin, Ohio for a move to a warmer climate in Tallahassee, Fl where my parents live.
It was special to have her around for the holidays after living 1000 miles apart for the past 20 years. Here I'm sitting with mom and grandma at Christmas. Now that she is closer, I had much more time during this furlough to 'hang out' with grandma Doris. She always had a meal prepared when we stopped by her house and she never turned down a game of cards. Grandma Doris has been a shining example of love and devotion to her family. If a need arises, she doesn't hesitate to help out. Since she grew up with a big family on a farm, she's taught me much about being a pioneering woman.
Grandparents. I could say much more but I'll leave you with this. Terrill & I both have wonderful parents who've poured much love & wisdom into our lives. But, others (like our grandparents) have influenced us as well. We're thankful for the many people who have invested in us.