This week my sweet grandfather passed into the arms of his Savior, Jesus Christ. I was able to spend a few endearing moments with him that morning, to hold his hand, to kiss his forehead and to tell him one last time how much I loved Him and how much he has meant to me throughout my life. Preparations for his Memorial have consumed my week. No school at the Sadler home, No laundry washed, No Family Night this week...I did, however, manage to feed everyone! HaHa! I was putting together a slide show for my G-Pa's Memorial. Digging through pictures, remembering his stories from his days serving in the Navy, laughing at the funny...and crying at the sweet. Remembrances of my grandmother, Meme, who passed years before...their sweet life together and the blessings having of two loving, involved grandparents growing up. We found pictures of G-Pa's brothers and sisters, trips to New England, Alaska, Main and even pictures from Guam and Hawaii. What a full and wonderful life he had. All of these memories tucked into a 6 minute slideshow accompanied by Ella Fitzgerald and Dean Martin...music he enjoyed.
I am still soaking in the reality of my G-Pa's passing. The business of death has preoccupied my thoughts but now it is time to be still...to cry a little... just to close this wonderful chapter in my life.
During the Memorial one of my Great-Aunts said something very hurtful to me. It wounded me to the core of who I am. You see...G-Pa is not my biological grandfather. He married my grandmother about 50 years ago after the passing of her first husband, my G-Pa's best friend (kinda cool!). He is however...my G-Pa. He has been a loving Husband to my Meme, a gentle and loving Dad to my mom, and the best G-Pa anyone could ask for. So when I was told that something of his wouldn't be as valuable to me as it would be to his brother, because HE was his brother (meaning, of course, that he was blood relations)...it hurt.
You see...we WERE his family. He loved us as children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. To him...we were never considered to be Meme's family or step family...He loved us like his own.
This morning the Lord reminded me that He too, loves me, a Gentile, so much that he sent his son to live a sinless life, take my sin as his own on the cross and rise victorious over death so that I may be co-heirs with Christ.(Romans 8:17) "We have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father." Romans 8:15 We are not considered step children to the Lord. He loves us as he loves his only begotten son. He has grafted us into the family.
This morning, I prayed for my Aunt. You see, it is so hard for her to wrap her head around my heart, because she doesn't share the same view about our family as G-Pa did. To her, we are step family...my mom, has been held at arms length her whole life. The Lord showed me that for this very reason, many of His children will stay "step" children. They choose not to wrap their hearts around the Father's Love and Open arms. They look at the cross through their own perception, and not through the Father's eyes of Love, Compassion and Acceptance.
If you struggle with your position in Christ, as an heir to the Most High God, and a beloved child...Pray that the Lord would wipe the veil from your eyes so that you may behold the loving face of your heavenly Father and in-turn be able to cry out to him "Abba Father".