Celebrate Her

My Grandma Springs was sassy. And funny. And mischievous. And the godliest person I have ever known to walk around in flesh and bones. She met Him later in life and spent all of her remaining days trying to make up for lost time – and, boy, did she ever! I teased her that she might live to be 900 years old because she was allowing God to accomplish so much through her. I wish she had…

  • It’s a little crazy to think that she was about 37 when I was born (both she and my mom were young brides). That’s only two years older than I am now.
  • She would take Hershey’s cocoa (powder in a can), mix it with sugar and water, boil it just right, and make the best chocolate syrup I have ever tasted. I wonder how many chocolate-saturated slices of bread I have eaten over the course of three and a half decades. A few loaves at least…
  • She also baked the best sweet potato pies; she would bake 15 or 16 at a time. They would be covered in brown sugar, so they would kinda be black on top – yummy. Makes my heart hungry…
  • She called me the morning of the Ocean Isle Beach house fire last October where seven college students died so we could pray together for the families and the survivors.
  • She was an ordained minister in her church.
  • She smiled and laughed a lot, but she would not smile in pictures.
  • She was married to my Papa for 55 years.
  • She came to spend the weekend with me in my apartment in Anderson well over a decade ago. So thankful for those memories…
  • She loved the mountains. And staying in her camper in the mountains. And the lake. And staying in her camper at the lake.
  • She was phenomenal at sending cards on birthdays. And we have a big family. She and Papa had six children, ten grandchildren, and about a dozen great-grandchildren (love to you, Beck! Thanks for reading).
  • She was just love. She wasn’t self righteous or abrasive in her faith. The love of a Savior just shone through her care, her concern, her deeds, her prayers, her smile, her humor, her meals, her words.

She passed away Saturday morning. Rather unexpectedly. I miss her.

But there’s this paradox between celebration and sadness at the death of one of His. We celebrate for her and we celebrate all that her life was and the scores she touched, but we are sad for ourselves.

Her send-off was perfect. There are few things in life that I would call perfect, but the celebration of her was perfect! As strange as it sounds, it was a great weekend of celebrating and mourning her. We stood under the tent at her graveside singing praises to our God (Psalm 116:15– love that verse!) as a gentle breeze blew across us. Perfect! It was a weekend of worshiping Him for His goodness and His grace and His mercy.

I do have regrets. I regret that I had not seen her since Mother’s Day. I regret that I didn’t call more often or send cards more often. I regret that I allow the tasks of life to eclipse the value of relationships…

And I want to say, in her memory, that He changes lives in a way that is better than anything we can imagine. He did hers. He did mine. At the occasion of death, we focus of Jesus’ ability to change our eternity, but He wants to change our now.

I praise Him. I celebrate her.

Would a rose by any other name smell as sweet?


  1. gillian
    September 4, 2008 at 11:25 am

    A beautiful tribute to an obviously beautiful grandmother!

  2. Scarlett
    September 4, 2008 at 2:24 pm

    So sorry to hear of the loss of your Grandmother, but I celebrate with you in her home going!! What a wonderful tribute to her legacy here! I was very close to my grandmother too (Also last name Springs?!)…so I share your pain and your loss. I will be praying for you and your family over the next few weeks as you grieve and praise and adjust.

  3. erika chapman
    September 5, 2008 at 1:16 am

    Beautiful my friend. She is loving this post I know:)

  4. Mark
    September 5, 2008 at 1:45 am

    I empathize with you on regrets. One of the cruelist facts of life is that we truly do not know what we have until it is gone.
    Thank you once again for your openess and letting us in to what you are thinking.
    By the way I love your last sentence, “I praise him, I celebrate her.”

  5. Beck
    September 5, 2008 at 1:48 am

    I just wanted to let you know that i thought grandmas tribute was awesome. I just wanted to share it with the whole world, so i copy, pasted and emailed it out to the relatives that i have addresses for. I also ran a copy of just that entry and will be posting it at work with my thank you to all that sent me cards from work. Grandma would have been so proud of you for that. Im sure she is bragging on you in heaven right now.

  6. Dawn George
    Dawn GeorgeReply
    September 6, 2008 at 2:12 am

    I’m so sorry for you loss, my friend.

  7. Mary Nell
    Mary NellReply
    September 6, 2008 at 12:44 pm

    I’m so sorry for your loss…and so happy that God has given you the perspective to allow you to use to for His glory. Thanks for the reminder that relationships are far more important than my “to do” list :).

  8. Melanie Turner
    September 11, 2008 at 6:09 pm

    Cookie, I am saddened to hear of the loss of your grandma. She obviously had a great impact on you, and God is pleased. I hope that’s how we all end our lives…pleasing God.

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