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Always There for Us


Brenda Nail DeLauder Columnist

  The day before the holiday season began found many of us rushing through the day, trying to accomplish too many things. Yet this day also held something far more important than a chore. There was a funeral to attend for a dear and wonderful soul, who was compared to the lighthouses she dearly loved, because she too was a beacon of light for many. Having outlived much of her family and friends, I feared there would not be a large crowd, but I was gladly wrong. Many people also felt the importance of celebrating this gracious woman’s life.

  I sat in the middle of this big Sanctuary and felt my soul slow down to take it all in. Peppered throughout the rows of seats were people I have always known. They are part of who I am and I felt such a blessed peace in the reminder of my roots.

  It had been a trying week with a frustration I couldn’t seem to come to terms with, because it was beyond my control. Just because something is not in our control, doesn’t mean we readily accept it and move on. It falls into the easier-said-than-done category of life. Because we had arrived early, I had time to sit and quiet my mind. At first I was busy planning out the rest of the week, trying to fit all the various things into a short window of time. But as more familiar faces arrived and greetings were shared, I found my mind dancing back through memories of our lives. The one thing I most enjoyed was realizing we cared about each other and our families, warts and all.

  I had arrived with a sad heart and a troubled mind, but it was impossible to remain so. I felt such a warmth filling the room. Each of her four grandchildren spoke, sharing remembrances of this servant of God. Their words brought chuckles and smiles, as everyone seemed to move back in time listening to their stories. Even if you had never been inside her house, you could almost smell the bacon frying and hear the back door’s screen open and shut.

  Halfway through the service I realized I was no longer troubled and the frustration I couldn’t fix, really didn’t matter. It was a nonessential, therefore not worthy of my time. Here, in the middle of a funeral, I was being uplifted. Even in the passing of this wonderful person, she was still being God’s servant, helping me to follow the Light.

  As Christians, God wants us to trust and obey. When we do so, we find soul-filling joy and great happiness. But we are humans with many faults, often lacking patience. We know the phrase “God’s time, not mine” very well, but we still want to try our hand at fixing things, even when they are beyond our ability to repair. By the time we mix it all up, throwing in a dash of worry, a big helping of frustration, and add a touch of anger, we have made a big mess out of something we should have left alone in the first place. 

  Yet when we finally stop, sometimes by feeling God’s hand on our shoulder, we turn it over to Him and say, “Lord, help.” The best part of saying that is knowing He will.

  It took a room full of home folks, a place to stop and be quiet, and a celebration of a beautiful life, for God to finally gain my full attention. I am so grateful He doesn’t give up on me. He is there for all of us, if only we let Him be.

  In loving memory of Mrs. Edna Hammock.


   Brenda Nail DeLauder is a native of Henry County. Her heart remains in her hometown.



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