Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Bringing Peace Along

"You are the light of the world." ... Matthew 5:14 


My grandparents were my reminders that there are real Christians in this world. I'd visit their simple house, with their red-checked table oil cloth and worn chenille bedspreads, and those two people were always the same--peaceful. Calm. Perhaps that's partly why I love vintage stuff like jade-ite and flowered metal canisters now--those things remind me of the tranquility in my grandparents' home.

To mention the term 'stressed-out' and my grandparents in the same sentence is ludicrous and laughable. I don't recall them ever acting stressed-out about anything.

But the wonderful thing was that they took that peace, that Light, with them wherever they went. My siblings and I would ride in the slippery backseat of their old white Ford and my grandparents would sit in the front seat quietly talking, no matter how many other drivers or pedestrians acted crazily around them. They'd never rush us through the Five-And-Dime or K-Mart. We took our time, ambling through aisles, my grandfather exclaiming over the cleverness of whoever it was who'd thought-up certain new inventions.

I loved being in my grandparents' world. It was always a calm, serene place.

The amazing thing, though, is that while I walked in a serene glow with my grandparents, there was a stressful, care-ridden, unhappy world co-existing with our quiet one. I'm talking right around that dreadful year of 1968. It's as though we stood and moved in the peaceful core, while around us spun and spun an out-of-control outer edge. Two ways of living taking place at one time.

I preferred my grandparents' way of living. I still do. And to prove it, I still walk in that peaceful core, which means I do a lot of watching of those people swirling all around me. The stressed-out ones who have no peace, no Light, no joy. And when Grace nudges me, I reach out and--snatch!-- a person from that swirling stream and bring them into the calm center.

With a smile.
A warm "Hello."
A "How are you?"
A "Here, let me help you with that."
An "Oh, you can go ahead of me."

...or even with these essays. I seldom find peace or Light out in the market place, so I take them along with me to share. They are real to me and I so want them to become real to others.


"Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all."   ... 2 Thessalonians 3:16

First keep the peace within yourself,
then you can also bring peace to others... Thomas A. Kempis 

To read more about my grandparents, click here.



Cindy said...

Debra, I love reading your always takes me to a peaceful, serene place! I love your memories of your grandparents.

Peg said...

Hi Debra,

Hope all is well! I haven't heard from you in awhile! I needed to hear your words today as I was stressed out yesterday about all the things I need to get done.

A blessed New Year to you and your family!

Saija said...

what a lovely tribute to your grandparents ... and as they made memories for you, we make memories for others ... i hope that when i am thought of, it will be a thought coupled with calmness and peace . . . the Spirit of Jesus within . . .

Lord bless your day!!! Saija (p.s. i'm watching Joyce Meyers programs)

daisymarie said...

This made me smile, inside and out! As a child we would visit my great-grandparents' home out in the country. It was like entering a completely different world. A world of Willow china, jade-ite, and granite ware. I loved to watch my tiny great-grampa toddle out to the barn or emerge from the corn field. I carry a piece of the charm and peace with me to this day. Thanks for the reminder.

C. Fish said...

Your blog is very peaceful and serene and I enjoy reading here. It brings me into that peaceful core you describe.

Ever feel like you're in a moment like you see in a movie where the camera is focused on you and everything else is sped up and in a swirl of motion around you? Life feels like that sometimes, but I prefer the peaceful slow motion of things.

Dianne said...

Lovely thoughts, Debra. I too had grandparents like yours - theirs was simple and stressfree lifestyle. Thanks for putting me in mind of them tonight. (P.S. I finally figured out links and added one to your blog on mine!)

Debra said...

Thanks, Everyone, for your comments. I so enjoyed hearing about your own grandparents and their similarities to mine.
And Fish--yes, I feel that way nearly everytime I go to the supermarket, especially when I sit there awhile with coffee and a magazine-- it really does feel like the rest of the world is spinning and I am in the calm eye of the storm.
Thanks again, Everyone.... Debra