Yesterday, I shared with you how much it matters when we do little things to bless others. If you missed that post, you can find it HERE.
Today, I want to give you a word of encouragement that God can take those “little” things and make a “big” difference in His kingdom!
Sometimes I am a little worried about sharing too much about how wonderful I think my mom was. I would never want these posts to glorify her and not God. Each week when I write these posts, I can hear my mom saying, “Traci, honey, don’t focus on me…point them to Jesus.”
So I want you to know that as I share the wonderful things that my mom did here on earth, I want it to be very clear that it was Jesus Christ in my mom that accomplished those great things.
Mom’s visitation and funeral were two of the most amazing things I have ever seen. I knew my mom was loved by many, but to see the outpouring of love to my family during her visitation and funeral was overwhelming.
Mom’s visitation was on a Thursday night from 5 to 9:00 p.m. We were originally only going to allow 3 hours, but anticipating a big crowd, we decided on 4 hours.
The funeral home was packed as soon as the visitation began. There were faces as far as I could see. The line went out of the room, down the hallway, and out the door.
It was September, and the weather outside was wet and chilly. As the night progressed, and more and more people came through the line to express their condolences, I would ask some of them how long they had to wait to get to us. They shared that the wait was over an hour and a half! We found out later that the line to my mom’s visitation actually went all the way outside, wrapped around the building and continued down Main street. Those precious souls waited out in the cold and rain just to express their love for my mom and my family! It was after 10 o’clock before the last person left.
Why would they do that? Well, I believe it was because my mom touched their lives in some little way along the road, and it mattered.
I cannot tell you the number of people who were at her visitation that I have never seen or met before.
Here is what I heard over and over again…
“Hi, Traci. You don’t know me, but your Mom visited me while I was in the hospital several years ago and it meant the world to me.”
“Traci, I’m ___, you don’t know me, but when my wife was sick last summer, your Mom sent us a card almost every week to tell us she was praying for us.”
“Traci, we’ve never met, but your mom was our church secretary, and every time I saw her, she always had a warm smile for me and was full of words of encouragement. She will be greatly missed.”
“Traci, your Mom made the best apple pie! She made one for our family when our first child was born.”
It continued all night.
Sending a card, making a pie, or sharing a smile may not seem like a big deal, but to those people, it mattered.
My dear friend, Julie, waited in that very long line, and she told me about something that happened while she was waiting.
A man who was at the funeral home for a different visitation was looking curiously around the room at the long line that was for my mom’s visitation. He had a perplexed look on his face as he peered around the corner trying to see whose visitation it was. It was a look as if he had missed the “memo” or the evening news…. “Who was this lady?” he asked. Julie said she could tell he was waiting to hear a name he would recognize, maybe a local politician or well known citizen. Why else would there be a line of people wrapped around the building in the cold and rain?
But before Julie could respond, a lady in front of her said, “She wasn’t anybody special, just a beautiful woman of God.”
Now that lady wasn’t saying that my mom wasn’t special. She just meant she wasn’t someone special by the world’s standards. She wasn’t a politician, a news anchor, a famous singer or writer. She was just a mom, a wife, a sister, and a friend. Her position as a church secretary didn’t make her famous or wealthy. Yet hundreds and hundreds of people stood in line for hours to show how special she was in their lives!
That’s what the love of Christ can do in a life. He can take an ordinary person and do extraordinary things for His Kingdom. But we must let Him. We must give our lives to Him daily, and pray that He would fill us with His wisdom and strength to be the kind of people He wants us to be.
Sometimes I don’t feel very special. I’m just a stay-at-home mom. I’ll never be famous or wealthy in this world. Sometimes I feel like I’m not making much of a difference.
Do you ever feel that way?
Well, let me encourage you (and me). It is Christ in us that makes us special. If we give our lives to Christ each day, He will do big things in our lives. Things that may never get noticed by the world, but things that will make an eternal difference in the lives of others.
That’s the kind of life I want to live!
Thank you for letting me share the thoughts beneath my heart,