2. Ask the Hard Questions
Maw Maw dug potatoes out of the Alabama dirt to feed her five younger siblings. She sent care packages overseas to Vietnam where her three brothers fought a gruesome war—all gone at the same time. She knows hunger, war, death: life’s cruelest phases, and to ignore that part of her life, to ignore the strength that she now lives in, would be a shame.
After all, I want to walk in such strength throughout my life. I want to know how she’s survived hell’s best shots and still knows that God’s grace is worth it all. If I crave her secret to such deep, spiritual success, then I have to ask her hard questions, and I have to believe that though awkwardness wants to rule the conversation, understanding, trust, and honor take the reins.
I’ve held my breath and quickly spit out questions like:
“Do you feel like a piece of you is missing since Pepa died?”
“How often did you go to bed hungry as a child?”
“What was it like waiting to hear if one of your brothers died in Vietnam?”
“Did you ever have a miscarriage?”
“How did the church back in the day present your role as a woman?”
Some of her answers ripped me apart, especially when I realized few had ever taken the time to ask her these things in her 70-plus years of living. But as it is with most rips, tears and tatters, both in the physical and spiritual realms of our lives, God stitches us back together with string and cloth that clothe us in an unshakeable grace and hope.
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