Sunday, December 4, 2011

A Legacy of Thankfulness

On Wednesday, November 23, as the wheels from flight 3947 from Chicago to Knoxville touched the runway tears spilled from my eyes.  I knew I had my mom, a brother, and one of my favorite 8 year old friends waiting for me on the other side of the security check point.  I turned Billy Ray Cyrus' "Back to Tennessee" off, put my iPod away, grabbed my bags and walked as quickly as possible through the revolving door. I scanned the crowd of people for the ones that I knew, smiling when I saw Ben's little hand shoot up and point straight at me.

 I was home.  I was thankful.

*Rewind about a month and a half.*

On Friday, November 4, I called Mom and asked her how she was feeling one week after her surgery.  She told me she was doing better.  Then with a tender certainty she told me that Grandpa George was in the hospital and would not be going home.

On Tuesday, November 8, at 7:30 AM my phone rang as I was getting ready for class.  I saw that it was mom and my heart sank.  I answered the phone.  Grandpa was with Jesus.

On Wednesday, November 9, I was talking to Mom before my 11:00 class and she shared with me the words of my Grandmother that have marked me forever.  When my mom went in on Tuesday morning to tell my Grandma that the hospital called and her husband had died she grabbed Mom's hand and said, "O, dear Lord, thank you for my life with George. It has been such a good life." 

Grandpa was home.  She was thankful.

I deeply admire my Grandma's heart of thankfulness.  In what could have been one of the darkest day's she has seen, she chose to acknowledge the Giver of Life and thank Him.  I want to be exactly like her.  I want to acknowledge Jesus and choose thankfulness every day of my life.  

I also deeply respect and admire my Grandpa George's heart of steadfast love, devotion, and kindness that he demonstrated toward Jesus, his family, and all those around him.  I am thankful for the legacy that I have in Grandpa George and Grandma Phillis.

This is one of the photos that was displayed at his funeral.  What an honorable man.

I found this picture in their basement after his funeral.  I love it so!  They are too cute for words.

*Fast forward back to Thanksgiving break.*

After receiving flowers from Georgi and hugging Mom and Ben at the airport we headed to O'Charley's because I could not wait one more day for those delicious rolls!  The rest of my weekend was full of things to be thankful for.

I'm thankful that I did not have an emotional breakdown over the fact that this is what was happening in my room.  Less sarcastically, I am thankful that even though my real window was going to be covered because of our building project, they gave me a new one.

Here is the new sun room that I came home to.  I feel like everything about my house changed.  I am thankful that the people who live there did not change.

I am thankful for my cat.  My roommate Lauren and dear friend Carly hate cats.  With them hating on cats all the time my heart became hardened and I thought I didn't miss Jackson.  Then I saw him and I couldn't stay away from him.  Ok, I am going to stop before this gets weird.

I am thankful for Kathryn Marie Crouch.  She has taught me to love Jesus and love His Word.  She is so wise and just as I want to be like her mother, I want to be like her.

I was so thankful to have free food and drinks all weekend.  All my college friends can relate.

I was thankful to lay by the fire and watch silly cartoons with this beloved friend.

On Thanksgiving Morning my dad and brothers took me to the one mile Fun Run in Turkey Creek.  I was thankful to be able participate in my first legitimate running event with them.  Ben beat me by like 5 minutes and Andrew stuck with me the whole time.  Dad took pictures like any good dad would and then completed his run in like 6 minutes.  Not fair.  Actually, I will choose to be thankful that my mile went from 10:45 to 8:48 in 3 weeks.

Love this girl.  Thankful to be her friend!

I am so, so, so thankful for my brothers.

I was thankful for a 2 hour nap with my mom.  I have come to appreciate naps at college, but this nap has trumped them all.  I love her.

I am thankful for my family!  And I am thankful that they live in Tennessee.  I really like that state.

I was thankful that Lindsey posted a picture on my Facebook wall which reminded me to dress up my cat.  One of my favorite past-times.  He is just so stinking cute.  Andrew always makes me take the sweater off right away because it stresses Jackson out.

I am thankful for these men in my life.  So thankful.

I am thankful for my Mommy.  It was so fun just being with my family.  And this post would not be real if I did not also tell you that I am thankful for my boots and the sweater that Lindsey gave me that I am wearing in this picture.

I am thankful that Skinny had to come from Dad's office.  I really like having him in my home.

And Jesus only knows how thankful I am for these friends.  We forgot to get a picture before Madelyn had to leave, but I am thankful for her too.  And many others.  Jesus has been so gracious to surround me with fun friends who love Him and love each other.

Although I am thankful for things like cute out fits and cat sweaters, I am mostly thankful for Christ and those He has given me to do life with.  I am thankful for a Grandmother who has taught me the power of thankfulness. I am thankful for parents who have cultivated a love for Jesus in me.  I am thankful for a sister who is serving Jesus in beautiful ways all around the world.  I am thankful for brothers who make me smile and make me THINK deeply.  I am thankful for friends who make me laugh.  I am thankful to be at Moody Bible Institute.  I am my friends there that show me Jesus.  I am thankful for Christ.  And I am so thankful for His Word.

"Give thanks in everything, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." 
1 Thessalonians 5:18


  1. Chesney Crouch! That bit about your Grandmother almost made me cry! I think that's what everyone would hope to be able to say at the end of their partner's life. So inspiring! Love you:)

  2. Inspiring is right. She is wonderful. Thanks for commenting! Love you too friend. Hope you are enjoying this holiday season :)