"You are the light of the world." ... Matthew 5:14
My grandparents were my reminders that real Christians exist in this world after all. 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. I don't recall them ever acting stressed-out about anything.
And the wonderful thing? They brought that peace, that Light, with them wherever they went. My siblings and I rode 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 never rushed us through the Five-And-Dime or K-Mart, no, we ambled through aisles, my grandfather exclaiming over the cleverness of people who'd thought-up new inventions upon the shelves.
I loved walking around in my grandparents' world. What a serene, safe place.
The amazing thing, though, is that while my grandparents and I stepped calmly along it was 1968, one of the most dark and turbulent of America's years. It's as though we stood and moved inside a peaceful core, while around us spun a screaming, out-of-control outer edge. Two ways of living taking place at one time.
I preferred my grandparents' way of living. I still do.
To prove it, even though they're gone (yet always close by hearts), I still walk in that peaceful core. And I do a lot of watching of those people swirling all around me, the stressed-out ones, even Christians, who have no steady peace, little calm and only wispy, come-and-go joy.
What I love, though, is to reach out and--snatch!-- a person from that chaotic, swirling stream and bring them into this calm center.
With a smile.
A warm "Hello."
A real "How are you?"
A "Here, let me help you with that."
An "Oh, you can go ahead of me."
... or even with these blog posts.
Now, as a grown-up, myself, I bring some extra Peace, Light and Calm with me to share whenever I drive around or shop or visit. They were real to my grandparents, they're real to me and I so want them to become real to others.
First keep the peace within yourself,
then you can also bring peace to others... Thomas A. Kempis
Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it." ... Isaiah 30:21
To read more about my grandparents, click here.
12 Symptoms of Spiritual Awakening.