Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Grandparent(s) (04/03/08)
TITLE: "Tear Tracks"
By Corinne Boback
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Near summer’s end, my grandparents asked if we would like to live with them indefinitely and go to their local country school for Junior High. My parents had surprisingly given their permission for us to do so. I was ecstatic at the thought of never having to go back home. Although I could never tell anyone why I hated it there, my grandparents knew there had to be a good reason. They gently asked questions off and on through the years, but I was unable to speak the truth. I knew something terrible would happen to me, or to someone I loved, if the truth be known.
Then an accident happened. My sister sustained a fractured leg while horseback riding. It was two weeks before school was to begin. She would be hospitalized for weeks, and then would have to be at home for months. She would require much care during her recuperation.
One night shortly after the accident, Grandma put dinner in the oven and said she was going out for her evening walk. Grandpa had gone to the hospital to visit my sister and said he would be home by dinner time. Dinner was done. I took it out of the oven. I called for Grandma and there was no answer in the yard. I searched the quiet country road for her, but she was not there. Where was she? She always walked in the yard or on the road.
It was dark, and I was getting scared. I paced the floors waiting for Grandpa to get home. Grandma was epileptic and had occasional seizures, which was a cause for alarm and I knew it.
I heard the car in the driveway, and ran to tell Grandpa what was going on. I watched from the kitchen window as he drove through the backyard and into the recently mowed hayfield. He drove slowly, stopping occasionally. Finally, I saw Grandpa’s bent form in the car’s headlights. He lifted Grandma from the ground and put her in the backseat. At the house, she walked into the living room, leaning on Grandpa. She began to seize, and fell to the floor. Grandpa and I knelt on either side of her, protecting her from injury. When the seizure subsided, she looked into my face with sadness. My heart sank, for I knew the words that were coming.
She had gone to the field to ask Jesus for the words that would help me understand why she had to send my sister and I home. She knew physically she would not be able to give my sister the care she would need during her recovery. Apparently a seizure struck as she walked, and she blacked out.
I held her tightly, and bravely told her I understood, and my sister would understand too.
Summer ended. We returned to a house filled with pain, a pain I could never talk about, not even to grandparents who loved me so much.
Years later, I asked Grandpa how he knew Grandma was in the hayfield. He said quietly, “I followed her tear tracks.”
Puzzled, I asked what that meant. He said, “Jesus sees all of our tears, and bottles them up, but not before He allows someone to follow those tear tracks so His hurting child can be comforted.”
Then he said something I will never forget. “One day, my precious granddaughter, you will shed the tears you refuse to cry. The Lord will send someone to follow your tear tracks, that you, His child, may be comforted. Then Jesus will then bottle them up for all eternity as He sets you free from the pain that those tears hold.”
If Grandpa were living today, he would see his prayers for me have been answered. He would be happy to know that I finally found my “hayfield.” I left tear tracks, and someone came to comfort me. Then Jesus bottled my tears forever, and He has set me free at last.
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