Lately I have been watching my children with their grandparents. I love to see them interact and play together. I love to listen to my daughter telling them stories and watching how intrigued my parents are listening to them. We love to talk about all the fun things they have done together. We love to remember the places they have been together. I love to see my kids sitting with their grandparents. They do all the things that I was not allowed to do as a child together and I’m fine with that because they are making memories.
With all my observing lately, I can’t help to think of my grandfather…my late grandfather. You see my grandad from my dad’s side passed away when I was very young, so I don’t really remember him at all. My grandfather from my mom’s side only recently passed away. I want to tell you that I do not have one single memory with him that my kids share with their grandparents. Even though he stayed with us for a few years I have nothing that I can reminisce about, and you know what, its all my fault.
You see, I only came to know my grandfather when I was much older, I was just starting out as a teenager when I remember first meeting him. I used to hear my mom speak of him from time to time, but we never really knew him. I remember my grandad phoning our home phone this one time and naturally I always answered the phone first, when he answered he completely forgot my name and called me Melissa. I was so offended that I held a grudge towards him for many many years. When he moved in with us, I ignored him completely, he tried to interact with me but I shut him out, maybe it’s because I was jealous that my step aunt and her daughter got him all to themselves, he always spoke of them, he never forgot their names. He always used to speak of the fond memories they shared together. So here I was offended and jealous…over something stupid. Years passed and my grandfather now stayed really far away from us. I built up so much anger and resentment towards him that I completely cut him out of my life. I never said a good thing about him. At one stage I blocked him on WhatsApp and deleted him from my Facebook…over something small and stupid. Eventually he was able to get hold of me through my mother and I unblocked him. He started sending me messages from time to time, they would range from random messages that were meant to be passed on, to personal messages asking about myself and my children (also his great grandchildren). Nine out of ten times I would either ignore him or send a very blunt short reply. Until one day I got news that my grandfather had passed away…I did not even know he was sick. I would of if I took the time to reply to him or to answer his calls. It dawned on me that day that you only start to appreciate the messages and phone calls until you don’t receive them anymore. I only started to miss him and think of him once he was gone. You might be thinking what a rotten person I am and I will agree with you…yes, I am and I have to live with that for the rest of my life. I just want you to know that it’s not something I want someone else to have to live with. I also want you to know that I have asked God for forgiveness over this and he has taught me something very significant…if only I could have learnt this when my grandad was still alive.
I learnt that, over something stupid…I robbed myself of a relationship with my grandfather.
I learnt that, over something stupid, I robbed my children of a relationship with their great grandfather.
I learnt that, over something stupid, I wrecked something that could have been so beautiful.
I learnt that you only really know what you had till you have to delete the answered messages and number from your phone because their number is no longer in use…because they are now dead.
Here is where I want to encourage you.
We need to see the bigger picture, we are all human and we all make mistakes, its who we are and its what we do, we need to forgive each other.
In ten years from now, will whatever you are fighting about still matter?
I want you to know that regret is stronger than gratitude.
I want to encourage you…if you have issues with a family member, get over it. If Jesus can forgive you, you can forgive them.
I want to encourage you…if you have issues with a friend…get over it. If Jesus can forgive you, you can forgive them.
I want to encourage you…if you have issues with a colleague…get over it. If Jesus can forgive you, you can forgive them.
Ponder this… life is short, death is imminent, we are all brothers and sisters in Christ and in a couple of years from now it, won’t even matter anymore.
We are called to love, so we need to love, not just those who are easy to love but especially those who aren’t.
With it being Easter, I want to encourage you to ask Jesus for forgiveness and I want you to forgive those who have hurt you. Remember what Jesus did for you and for me on the cross and live each day from now doing your utmost best to love those around you…regardless!!!