Saturday, April 20, 2013

These Shoes are Made for People

It is up to us to live up to the legacy that was left for us, and to leave a legacy that is worthy of our children and future generations. ~Christine Gregoire

My RB has one speed -- fast. He talks fast, he walks fast and writes fast (35 polished pages written in one day -- including travel and some other normal duties).  When he was a teenager his father told him, "If you slow down, I'll walk with you." I've used those same words, too.

In spite of how fast he may walk, he slows down for one purpose -- people. He. loves. people. It's not something he puts on for social occasions. It's not something he pulls out when he thinks someone can be useful to him. It's genuine.  The man who fills those fast-walkin' shoes loves people.

RB told me one day that he wanted "People Need the Lord" at his funeral. And while that wasn't a thought I wanted to entertain, I knew it was a testimony of the mission statement of his life.  For years, every Friday when the garbage men came to the campus where we lived/worked, he took coffee (and sometimes donuts) to them.  On bitterly cold mornings, he invited them in the school to warm up.  

There are times we can sit across from someone and share the gospel. But there are many more times we have the privilege of loving someone to a relationship with God.  

When we can separate the sin from the sinner and offer love. When we share their pain of broken dreams.When wood shaving by wood shaving we remove the chip off their shoulder. When our money removes the physical need so the spiritual need becomes revealed. 

Emily and I were waiting for RB Wednesday...and waiting...and Emily said, "He probably found a new friend." It's a legacy, this love of his.  It's worth more than any monetary gift he could give our daughters. 

RB sees the need in each person he meets -- the cashier at the store, the harried mother, the one who made the wrong choices, out-of-work husband, the rebellious teenager, the middle-aged father whose dreams have shattered in the wake of day-to-day struggles of putting food on the table. He has time for the elderly, the child, and everyone in between the two. Or as Steve Green put it:  

On they go through private pain,
Living fear to fear.
Laughter hides their silent cries,
Only Jesus hears.

Through His love our hearts can feel
All the grief they bear.
They must hear the Words of Life
Only we can share.

And that is how RB shelters.  He whispers the Words of Life through a handshake, a hug, sometimes a joke and many times by listening. He shares their private pain, their fears, all those silent cries, and gently carries them to Jesus. His smile, his hands, even those fast-walking feet become Jesus to the people who need Him.  

What about your feet?  You may take slower steps than RB, you may shuffle a bit or trip over your feet, but it's not in the feet, it's in the heart. And if your heart is full of love for those in need, it will spill over and leave the ones you touch with lighter steps and a heart open for the love of God.  .



Charlotte Wilson said...

What a beautiful post about RB, who I assume to be your husband.
I found you via Thistle Cove Farm.
Have a wonderful, blessed day!


SuzyQ said...

Awesome. Especially when you know RB and consider him a dear friend! So aptly put!

Marilyn said...

Pam, You are so right, and thanks for sharing this post with the rest of us. RB was so desired before his birth, and so special...ever since then! OOPS, I'm telling my age!

Pom Pom said...

Hi Pamela! WHAT a great post! RB is very inspiring and VERY encouraging! He's a helper.

SAMARA said...

Pamela you have a really beautiful site. Romancing the Canvas - isn't that what G-d does with us every second and we do with Jesus and G-d? I am total head over heals in love with G-d and He is my partner in life so I'd say I romance His Canvas as He Romances my Canvas through my Art. DONE! Because of reading your blog. Truly...Your blog told me it was the right thing to do. I was torn before. I thank you so much for this. Thank you for what you right. I don't advertise this, but I am a Rev. and Dr. and so Theologically I appreciate your writing as well as heartfully. No worries though for you! haha. I am an institutional Chaplain, not on the pulpit so what do I know, other than my in loveness. (ok slightly modest - but not much lol) Keep writing...I love it! I will see you again...that is for sure. {grace} lovies, samara

Anita Johnson said...

As always I enjoyed my visit here and another beautiful song for my playlist.

Granny-Guru said...

What a beautiful post and tribute. He reminds me of my nephew. When he came to visit one summer I took him and my son, they were then about 7, downtown to visit the Smithsonian. We barely got there because my nephew wanted to stop and talk to all the homeless people along the way, just to be respectful and courteous and let them know someone thought they were special.

Beth said...

A very lovely tribute to RB.

Annesphamily said...

I really love this post! IT is always so nice to give! A beautiful tribute and always just a pleasure to stop by her and feel encouraged!

I am so excited that I won your giveaway! Thank you for the chance to win and I am grateful I won!

Hugs and Blessings,


Melanie C. said...

Beautiful, Mom. So proud to be able to call this amazing man 'My Dad' ...Your Firstborn

Denise said...

Precious post.

Shannon Wallace said...

This post made me smile in the midst of what was a very sad week in America. I'm inspired even more so to be Jesus in the flesh to a stranger.

sharon said...

What a wonderful tribute. He is what we all should aspire to be, you are a blessed family!

Aritha said...

I enjoyed what you write. Such people are like the sun. They warm and lighten somebody mind. And are a blessing. Your posting is special because you encourage me to step out of my comfort and to love people that cross my way. Thanks Pamela.

Denise said...

What a wonderful Spirit-filled heart he has; I love how you used shoes to illustrate his journey and mission. I pray I can touch people's hearts with my steps!

Thanks for touching so many people's hearts with your beautiful writing Pamela!

Blessings and love,

Ivy, Phyllis and Me! said...

Good Morning Pamela, Firstly may I say, it is lovely to meet you and secondly, thank you for leaving such kind words on my blog.
RB, who I imagine is your husband, sounds like a wonderful man. It is so lovely to hear about someone who is such a kind and generous spirit. To be able to touch the lives of everyone who comes in to his path is such a precious gift.
Have a wonderful Sunday together.
Best Wishes

Meredith said...

Thanks for the lovely and inspiring post. The Lord bless and keep you both.

Brenda said...

Hi Pamela,
from reading the comments I see that RB is your husband. What a lovely tribute to a lovely man. As I was reading your post my father, who died when I was eleven, came straight into my mind. His character was the same. God bless.

Ruth said...

My husband's children have a similar saying about him, "We can't go anywhere without Dad knowing someone to talk to". They weren't always patient about waiting on him, but they say this now with pride.

My prayer is to notice people around me and love more!

Thanks for the encouragement of RB's life.

~Kc Waddell said...

The thing I love most about this post is the obvious love you have for RB and the fact you aren't afraid to share that with the world. So many people don't think very highly of their spouses and it really is sad. So glad I like mine!

momstheword said...

What a sweet man he must be!

I love what you said here: "And if your heart is full of love for those in need, it will spill over and leave the ones you touch with lighter steps and a heart open for the love of God."

Yes, we need to pray for open and loving hearts and just be open to those the Lord brings across our path.

How blessed you are to have him for a husband! :)

Thanks so much for linking up to the "Making Your Home Sing Monday" linky party today! ;)

Courtney said...

This is beautiful, and honestly, reminds me of my husband. We are almost always the last people to leave any event, because he cannot stop visiting with everyone. Recently, I was a little frustrated because I was tired and ready to go. He got in the car, unaware of my huff, and said "I just love talking to people!" It about cracked me up, because truer words have never been spoken. And the truth is, the world needs people like that. Thanks for this great reminder to me on a Monday morning :)

Nikki (Sarah) said...

Pamela....I love this. I absolutely loves this,. RB sounds like someone I'd love to meet and emulate. Hey...hope your week shines in every way.

Tom & Angela said...

We just sang People Need the Lord as our closing song yesterday. I often sing the last song sung through the week since it is what is left on my heart. I look at our neighbors and friends differently when I see their need differently. Thanks for visiting and commenting about the floats!

~ Tandis ~ said...

I love that song. It encourages me every time I hear it to put my hand out first in friendship and then as a witness for Him.

Thanks for your note on my blog at "Life as we SKI it" - I linked up with "Momstheword". What a blessing your blog was to me today. Thanks.

Esther Joy said...

I'm finishing up an "Esther" study by Beth Moore, and this morning was struck by the thought that living out the relationship is more important than proclaiming it. Sounds like that's what RB does!

Katharine said...

What a wonderful post! Stopping in from SDG and hoping you have a wonderful week!

Gina said...

Love this wonderful post! You ladies have a blessed week now:)

Sharon said...

Been thinking about legacy lately, as I care for my elderly parents. My mom was the one who led me to the foot of the cross when I was a very young girl. She continues to be a testimony of faith in my life.

I pray that God gives me the strength to leave good footprints behind for my sons.


Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

And PEOPLE are what the whole thing is about: Jesus came to teach us how to love one another! What I find fabulous, is that He gave us the rest to figure out....creative LICENSE to find ways to show our love for HIM and each other. Praise God for that gift and I thank YOU for coming to leave a comment on my birthday. Happy day dear! Anita

Jen said...

Beautiful! Having the privilege of loving someone in relationship to the Lord. Isn't that what it's all about! I have been so impressed with this thought lately. In my speediness, the need to slow down for people. That in the end, people will be all that matters. And my prayer is to see as many as I can, with me in eternity! Wonderful heart after the Lord, we read about today! Thank you!

Unknown said...

What a sweet legacy! He sounds truly gifted in this area. I hope I can love people with such free abandon.

Christy @ A Heartening Life

Esther Asbury said...

My husband isn't a fast walker but he is a people lover! On more than one occasion he has modeled something his father taught him as a teenager -- "People are important!" I'm very blessed to live with a man who truly loves people and so often puts their needs ahead of his own!