The Legacy I Want to Leave

Author: Beth Wear
September 20, 2018

My birthday last May brought a swirl of worries:  What about the hymn for my funeral?  I don’t have a favorite one! What about our little Takoma Park property -- do we have a will or a trust? -- better get a trust --fast.  What about my legacy to my family? It's got to be more than picking up groceries for the kids at Walmart.  And then I thought about my grandmothers and their legacy in my life.  My memories of them don't center on gifts, fun events and yummy food; they center on stories they told me.
            One such story was about when my mom was a teen-ager-- the summer of 1931, during the Great Depression.  Many in the town of Healdsburg, California, had lost their jobs and were joining bread lines.  One evening after supper my grandmother announced that she had misjudged and had a great deal of food left over.  "Too bad we don't have one of those new refrigerators I have read about.  Why don't we take this food to the Russell family."
            And so teen-age Bertha and my grandmother packed two large baskets of food, adding cans of beans, corn and fruit and started down the hill.  As they walked into the driveway, they noticed the Russell family having worship and kneeling in prayer. Not wanting to interrupt. they could hear the family prayers through the open window.   Eleven-year-old Charles was pleading, " Jesus, please send us food; we are so hungry."  Mr. Russell's prayer ended with, " Lord you know how hard I've tried to get work. . . . We thank you for hearing us."
            My mom would finish the story by saying, that although she was only 15 years old when they visited the Russell's, all these years later she never forgot what happened next.
            When they knocked on the door, Charles jumped up, and shouted, "God is sending us food already."
            Mr. Russell opened the door and said, "Why, good evening Mrs. Sullberg and Bertha.  Please come in."
            Charles ignored his father's shushes and announced,  "Our food, Dad!"
            As they walked back up the hill, my grandmother, with tears in her eyes, explained Mark 11:24 to my mom.  "Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you will receive them, and you will have them." And many years later, when I was a teen-ager, my mom repeated the story of the miracle leftovers and explained the text to me.
            At my next opportunity, I'm going to tell the family at least one story of how God intervened in my life.  The legacy of story-- that's the legacy I want to leave. What legacy do you want to leave?

7700 Carroll Ave |  Takoma PARK, MD 20912