October 29, 2015

Beth, the giver.

If you knew Beth, then you knew that she was a giver. She was a hard worker. She was redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. She was transparent. She always had a smile. She was pure joy. She loved Jesus. She loved her family.

I met Beth a couple of years ago. My grandfather was sent a new helper from home health about the same time he entered Hospice care at home. My grandfather lived a life devoted to Jesus. He was special. One of his great earthly rewards was that in his last days he had Beth to tend to him. Beth had taken the closest bus to my grandfather's house but it was still about 6 blocks away from his home. She had walked in the rain to tend to my grandfather a couple of times before I realized this and could help her with rides. I knew immediately Beth was a hard worker. As I left for the day to go home Beth asked me for any specific instructions. Taking care of a person on Hospice has lots of different facets. Beth was fearless. She had tended to others in their last days before and she was not afraid to do what needed to be done. Beth was not a Hospice worker, but a home health worker. She would walk my grandfather through his last days with the tenderness and concern as though she was part of our family.

I left some instructions for Beth and gave my grandfather a kiss on the cheek as he was resting when I left that day. The next morning I came back to a full page of notes written by Beth to let me know what she did as far as chores and meal preparation. And then she left me the scriptures (chapters and chapters from the Psalms) she read over my grandfather as he slept. She prayed, she sang, she spoke the love of Christ to my sweet Gran. I read her notes the next morning and my eyes welled up. Tears fell. Not only was my grandfather getting excellent care he was getting Christ's love from Beth.

I looked forward to every interaction with Beth. She didn't have much money to spare, but several times she bought some special groceries to make my grandfather special treats. She treated him like he was the most special person on earth.

Beth treated everyone like this.

Little did anyone know that Beth had been sick for a while. She had been in pain, but she didn't know it was cancer. The doctors told her it was normal to have back pain at her age. Beth was 50 years old. She had seen some rough times, made some destructive choices in her life, lived addicted for many years. Even then she still took care of her children. Beth had been clean for many years. I know that Beth must have always had a heart of gold. Once clean she lived out of a gratefulness of forgiveness. She was a giver of grace because she had been given so much grace. She loved to dance when she worshiped Jesus. Everything she did was a life poured out to Christ. I am most definitely a better person for Beth. She touched my life in such a special way. The world was a better place for her. She leaves a legacy of love and kindness.