My Grandfather just recently passed away.
I have to admit that it is a little hard to grieve at his passing; not because I didn't love him, or because I won't miss him; but rather, because he lived such a remarkably great life that I think it is more fitting to celebrate him than grieve him.
He was married to my grandmother for well over fifty faithful years. He raised a wonderful family, loved his wife and children dearly. Watched his grandchildren grow up and have their own kids. He live a life full of goodness and virtue that many simply could never imagine to be possible.
He worked hard, worked with his hands.
He grew up very poor, but didn't know it until he grew older! He spoke fondly of his boyhood and his family.
He was the kind of man who enjoyed the company of children. As I grew older I began to notice how easily he enjoyed taking his grandchildren for walks, to play catch, to swing on swings or slide down slides. What for many adults (and even parents) is a chore that they engage in, knowing it to be important, but finding it less than exciting, my grandfather did simply and with joy.
He was a friend to many. He was deeply involved in the life of their Church. He took it upon himself to care for handyman tasks about the Church building.
I remember holidays at their house in San Jose. All the cousins building forts in the living room out of chairs and blankets. Raiding the fridge in the middle of the night! I remember silly jokes and Hertz Donuts! I remember goofy sayings with just a little bit of an accent..
He is a man with a legacy.
My spiritual life is a tribute to his. He not only raised my mother to live in Christ, but was always there for me to see; a man of God. He is my grandfather, but he passed on much more than genes. He loved God deeply, and was deeply loved by Him. And so, God has brought Grandpa Jim to be with Him!
(I hope he gets the jokes!)
And now, we await the coming resurrection of the saints, when we shall see each other again!