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Shot Of The Day

Goodnight Irene

Goodnight Irene 1916-2007

“Good night Irene,” I can still hear her sing in a comforting grand-motherly way. Now I’m singing it as I reflect on her life and her role in mine. Irene Greenman Phillips, my step-grandmother, accepted me at 12 years old as her own. Lest I ever doubted, she “skipped the step” when introducing me. “That’s my granddaughter” she’d proclaim in that southern high-pitched voice. God has a funny way of making sense of things that really don’t make sense in a worldly way. At the funeral, it was her daughter-in-law Chris that really made the connection for me. “You probably could have really used a grandmother like Irene when she came along?” And then it bathed over me, like a cool shower that quenches something you are hungry to understand but don’t… until you are ready. For our entire lives, we are meant to “skip the step.” We are designed to love one another like we love our real grandmothers and our real mothers and our real sisters, because God sends people to fill the needs those “real” people sometimes can’t fill or won’t fill or are filling but we need more. They are in our lives for a season. Look around. Could you really use a grand-motherly figure right now? I bet she’s there in a neighbor, a friend, an aunt, a stranger! When you are ready, God “skips the step” and gives us what we need when we need it. But we gotta open the curtains, get our of our isolated self-sufficient world, and let the light that those other people have for us in. So today, I’ll skip the “step” and simply say “good night Grandma.” Good night, for now.

Posted: 1 May 2007