Better Late than Never?
When Mama passed away in 2008 I was honored to give a eulogy at her memorial service. I rewrote that eulogy to post for Mother’s Day this May…..and somehow never published it on my blog. Sigh. Even though it’s later than I intended, I hope you’ll enjoy a glimpse into the life of a wonderful woman.
The Blessing of a Godly Mother-in-law
I was doubly-blessed to have a mother who loved and served God whole-heartedly as well as a mother-in-law who was equally as godly. Since I recently wrote about my mother I’d like to honor my wonderful mother-in-law, Jean Talbert, this Mother’s Day.
A Lovely Lady
My mother-in-law was a lovely lady, refined and cultured with an interest in the arts and music. She loved to play the piano and listen to classical music – interests passed down to her children and grandchildren. Mom shared a house with Bud and me for a couple of years in the early 1980’s. It could have been a sticky arrangement, but it wasn’t due to Mama’s wisdom and graciousness. “Mama”, as she liked us to call her, was extremely hospitable, and loved to cook for and entertain her friends and family. She had particular delight in hosting the Lord’s servants, whether for a meal or overnight in her home.
Mama as a Nurse
Mom’s training as an RN showed up frequently. Every bump, scrape, and bruise was a hematoma, abrasion, or contusion while a hint of indigestion was always dyspepsia. When she began spouting medical terms we lovingly called her “Hematoma mama.” In order to become a nursing instructor at a Christian college Mom had to return to upgrade her education while in her mid-fifties. She was an intelligent woman with a keen mind and was grateful for the opportunity of teaching nursing from a Christian perspective.
Mama Was Never Boring!
Years ago when Bud was on a study tour in Israel, Mom drove with me to my parents’ home in Ohio. While taking her daily walk she “made friends” with some neighborhood ducks. The next day she took along a few slices of bread for her waddling buddies. A local photographer driving by was enchanted by this delightful woman peeking out from behind a tree to feed the ducks. Mom’s whimsical pose made the front page of our local newspaper!
Granny Loved Her Grandchildren
Mama dearly loved being Granny to her grandchildren. She had a marvelous sense of humor and a deep throaty laugh. We could occasionally wheedle her into barking and clapping like a seal which delighted and amazed her grandchildren. Granny often told the grandkids stories about her own childhood. She described how she and her sisters used to have burping contests then promptly taught her enthusiastic audience how to burp loudly too! An avid reader, Mom appreciated quality writing and had a particular fondness for missionary biographies. Dubbed by the grandchildren as the “Book Granny,” Mama used special occasions to buy brightly illustrated, charming books that our kids loved reading over and over.
A Godly Example
But more than anything else Mom loved the Lord and spoke of Him and to Him throughout her day. Her well-marked Bible and detailed prayer lists were indications of a vital and personal walk with Lord. She was a prayer warrior, particularly for her children and their families. We felt the loss of those prayers when Alzheimer’s prevented her from interceding for us. Proverbs 31:28 reminds us, “Her children rise up and call her blessed.” We were very blessed to have Mama as mother, mother-in-law and grandmother. Mom Talbert blessed her family by her intelligence, humor, love, and godliness. Mama, we miss you and look forward to being reunited with you in heaven someday. Thank you for the godly example you left us.