I’m from the country, up north, as we say in Michigan. A small town – the same town my mother and her mother grew up in. With Mom and Dad, grandparents, aunts and uncles and long-time friends of the family, my brother and I were literally surrounded by mentors who cared for, encouraged, and taught us. The memories of these early life lessons all wrapped in love are indeed sweet.
Over the years my list of teachers grew to include a husband, two daughters, sons-in-law, and three (sweetest, brightest, and cutest!) grandchildren. My resident classroom expanded as well to include four more states and another continent. As we moved neighbors and church friends became as close as family and the learning continued. Some wrapped in love, and some wrapped in hurt.
And the lessons? They’ve been about purpose, and calling, and living beyond today, beyond ourselves. They’ve been about relationships, saying hello and having to say goodbye, and sometimes just saying the hard things. They have been about becoming a better listener, and the difference between contentment and complacency.
The lessons? Well, they’ve just been about life, really.
And the grace to grow along the way.