A Legacy in Ruth Bell Graham

I recently spent some time at The Cove -- The Billy Graham Training Center -- in Asheville NC. While there, I got to deepen my appreciation for the woman behind Billy Graham, Ruth Bell Graham. I wish I had learned more about her before she went home to be with the LORD. Ruth seemed to embody a lot of the qualities I was seeking when my son was growing up. I would have liked to have known more about her, perhaps even written to her at some point. She appeared to have a handle on the day-to-day; I felt very much like I moved from one crisis to the next.

Part of that, I suppose, was the fact that I did not have Christ in my life until I was 28. In fact, my son led me to Christ when I was pregnant. The LORD had impressed upon me that I was indeed carrying a miracle; that He has plans for this child. The LORD's impression was so strong, in fact, that I immediately knew it was God, and He was serious. From that time on, my quest to know as much as I could about God took off like a rocket. My husband did not have any interest in a church--I had only the radio for my information. Late at night, a Christian radio station would come in clear, and I soaked up scripture like a sponge.

I had accepted Jesus (in words only) when I was 19 years old. It was a very matter-of-fact,"Yeah, so, what now?" attitude. I didn't think very much of it. But GOD didn't forget me. He took my decision seriously. (Even if I didn't.)

A divorce and a remarriage later, the LORD gently reminded me of my commitment and His words to me. God grew my husband and I in wisdom so we would be able to answer my son's questions, which came at a fast clip. Not having any godly family to look to for direction, I sought the Holy Spirit and a local church. God did not disappoint.

But I did wonder about the legacy I was leaving. I had those moments when I drove my son to exasperation. Those moments when I uttered hurtful words I can never take back. Sure, I'm better now, 20+years later, yet not near where I'd like to be. But what kind of memories did I create?

What legacy will I be leaving?

What will my son take away from his childhood?

Will he remember my joy in him? My delight in his antics?

I hope he remembers the laughter.

The Bears (and I Don't Mean Chicago)

I got a real treat while I was at The Cove. I walked out to the deck near the dining hall, looked down, and saw this. This was the elusive bear we were all trying to get a glimpse of during our week long stay. Taking a walk. She walked to the edge of the woods, to my left, no hurry, just walking. I hear a rustle of the trees to my right. I look over, and I see this. My dinner companions, Chris and Rochelle, had just come out to the deck. I motioned and loudly whispered, "there's bears!" The cubs heard this--one scampered up a tree about 10 feet; the other came out into the clearing a bit. Here comes Mom. Not hurrying, but about the same pace as before, went straight to the wayward bear cub and smacked him, sending him rolling! James and Ruby, my other dining companions, sadly, did not get to see this display of wildlife.

But can't you imagine the story?

I can't take another MINUTE with those two kids--they are driving me outta my TREE! "I'll be gone 5 MINUTES--don't you MOVE from this SPOT"...muttering...twins. I hadda have twins. All my friends had single births, but NO--I get twins...and boys yet...driving me out of my tree. What? Where do you think you're going Mister? I told you DO NOT LEAVE YOUR ROOM...get up in a tree like your brother (smack). Five minutes...I can't even have five minutes. Sigh.

Well, it might have been like that...