Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Grandparent(s) (04/03/08)
TITLE: A Christ-like Life
By Kimberly Mikolajczyk
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Most of what I learned about walking a Christ-like life came from my maternal Grandmother. Her love was pure and unadulterated. She felt that we could not possibly walk as Christ walked until we learned to love as Christ loved. From the warmth and security of her blanket of love and acceptance, she bestowed upon me the confidence to enter the world as a strong young woman. More importantly, she instilled in me an unshakable faith that if I sought first the Kingdom of Heaven, the peace of the Saviour would be mine.
I can remember her words as clearly as if she was sitting next to me right now, and if I close my eyes, I can hear her saying them. “Treat others as you want to be treated.” Simple but powerful. The world tells us that holding to this creed is impossible; they wait and watch for Christians to slip up so they can criticize and judge. Grandma lived it every day of her life. It seems that everyone that she came in contact with was drawn by the edification of her love, and just by means of her approach to life, she was able to lead many to Christ.
I will be forever grateful to Grandma for her help along life’s bumpy road. Entering adolescence, I thought that no adult on the planet could possibly understand the torment of self doubt that plagued me. I felt restless and horribly inadequate. Looking back on it now, I realize Grandma was always the port in the storm, the safe haven where I knew I would always be loved and accepted just by virtue of the fact that I was a child of God. I never had to prove my worthiness.
Through the challenges of marriage and family, she never ceased to remind me that “the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world” whenever the exhaustion of caring for two children under two threatened to overwhelm me. The sound of Grandma rocking her grandchildren and sweetly singing “Jesus Loves Me” rings in my ears like it was yesterday. Whenever I worried or fretted, she reminded me to “be still and know that He is God.” I’m sure I could not have made it through my childrens’ challenging early years without her loving guidance, and I know they are better people for the touch of her hand in their young lives. She always said that one could not love a child too much.
Grandma died fifteen years ago after a long and courageous battle with cancer, and it has left an undeniable hole in my life. But her words still continue to strengthen me. The world puts incredible demands on us. We are expected to prove to others daily that we are worthy of love, respect, kindness, and often, even the time of day. We are judged according to the world’s standards for success: money, power, and the amount of personal belongings we can amass. Thanks to my Grandma’s precious nurturing, as an adult I have measured my success according to the riches I have amassed in heaven. Everyday of my life, I saw Christ through her. I wanted to know Him. I wanted to accept His gift of eternal life.
Yes, I miss Grandma tremendously. But I am blessed to know that I will see her again.
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