On the thirteenth of October, 2017 our grandson, Noah, will be turning 16 years old. We can’t talk about it without tears in our eyes. He has been such a very special blessing in our lives. From about eight weeks old we have had the pleasure of keeping him… so, for almost 16 years we have kept this little guy almost every weekday.
We were awed as he went through the Thomas the Train stage when he (not yet able to read) could name every train car in the series. We went through the dinosaur stage when he could correctly pronounce and name all the different dinosaurs… and would correct you when you mispronounced them.
We were there for his baptism and confirmation… a great meaning and significance for me to officiate. He has been a faithful church member all his life… faithful, active, involved, learning and growing in the likeness of Christ. We are so proud of him. He has been given a gift his father nor I had… he grew up in the same community, made some really good friends, felt the love and acceptance of a community of faith in this place. Thank you PGUMC for loving our family, especially our grandchildren.
We were there when he came home from school with all A’s… receiving his first B in the seventh grade… a member of the Junior Beta Club, honors student in high school.
We were there when he tried T-Ball. He was so small the batting helmet would spin around on his head… ending up facing backward. He was so funny doing that, and looking for four-leaf clovers in the outfield or piling up dirt on second base. When he started soccer, the first seasons of that included chasing some little girl around in circles during the match… not all that concerned about scoring or soccer techniques.
One of the special characteristics for me was when he would offer these special little sayings which we turned into a Lenten study and then into a book; “The Sayings of Noah.” He was so creative, so inquisitive, so happy. Wow, we were blessed. One the special gifts Noah gives us, his grandparents, is that he will call us sometimes at night, not asking for anything, but just wanting to talk with us. I can’t begin to tell you how special that is… a fifteen year old calls his old grandparents at night… when he could be doing anything else… he shares a few specail moments with us. Yes, we are blessed.
Michael Weatherly tells what his grandfather use to say about him: “If you live to 26 you will find there is a good man in there.” I look into the heart of this young man and I know there IS a good man in there… just waiting to get out.
Soon this young man will be out there in the world preparing to graduate from high school and enter college. The whole world is out there before him waiting for him to make use of the love and support that has lifted him up all these years… family, friends, church, school, community.
For us, we are excited for him… but our heads are still spinning from the years flying by so quickly. It seems that only yesterday he was saying: “PaPaw, come see what I built. A big, big church.” Treasure your time with your kids and your grandkids. It is precious time – sacred time you can’t replace.
Happy birthday… 16th Birthday… young man. We love you, support you, honor you, admire you… pray with you… and we will always provide a safe place for you to land.
MaMaw and PaPaw
I grew up having these words being read to me on a regular basis. It is an “If” we should all make a part of our conversation and fabric of our living.
If—BY RUDYARD KIPLING
(‘Brother Square-Toes’—Rewards and Fairies)