At the Cross-Clothed in Grace


Many years ago, my husband, Larry, and I bought the old family home from his sister. There was just one condition. His elderly grandmother came with the house. It was fine with us.

Mrs. Jennie Bennett, in her eighties at the time, had a sweet temperament, and was surprisingly able to maintain it when two adults, three teenagers, and a kitten seized the house.

She was gracious when I took over the kitchen. She was even more gracious complimenting the meals I prepared. I couldn’t cook macaroni and cheese like she did, or so my husband said.

Once in a while, Mrs. Bennett propped up her feet in the living room chair, but most of the time, she sat at the kitchen table, content to play solitaire and watch soap operas on the little television in the corner.

If she had any concerns, she never voiced them to me. Her favorite saying was, “Anyway, anyhow.”

Larry and I took a weekend trip one time and left her in charge of the teens. When we returned and asked if they behaved well, her favorite saying was a little more elaborate.

“Anyway, anyhow, we made it.”

She was kind not to bother us with any details or tattle on the children.

As she grew old and frailer, she graciously accepted help. Larry watched over and cared for his grandmother’s every need. If she required help with paperwork, adjusting the lamp, or walking to her bedroom, Larry was by her side.

When her health necessitated hospitalization, he spent many hours by her bed. When she passed from this life, he meticulously followed her instructions to the smallest notations scribbled on little slips of paper.

I didn’t know Larry when he was young, but from the stories I’ve heard, his dear grandmother extended grace to the rambunctious boy many times. As he grew, I’m confident she extended as much grace needed to help Larry get through the life choices he made.

Watching Larry extend grace back to his grandmother was beautiful to me.

When Larry was young and weak, his grandmother’s grace filled in the gaps as needed. In return, when Jennie Bennett grew old and frail, Larry’s grace filled in the gaps for her.

It reminds me of the grace God provided all his children at the cross, and how much he continues to extend it daily, enabling us to fulfill the purposes he assigns.

Marvelous grace. It clothes us and fits every situation of our life.

“And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.II Corinthians 9:8


Melissa Kirk