On Wednesday May 15th 2019 at 4:45 am, my grandfather passed into eternity. His legacy reminds those of us still in this life that our short time impacts so many for generations to come. Will us successors choose to inherit this noble heritage – timeless fortitude amid the chaos of our fallen world? Will we bear the responsibility of maintaining livelihoods one day at a time? Yes, a sober mindedness not easily swayed by neither social trend nor cultural norm.
Grandpa was a man whom daily tended his garden. Family and community received the gifts of his hands. On top of serving action was integrity in word. This was decades of sustaining life, creating order in spite of not acquiring riches or glory. He was a father to orphans, as well as a provider to widows. Unlike so many of us, his prejudices came second to a compassionate respect for neighbors. Not a man of sophisticated faith, yet he was disciplined in right living.
A sharp reminder for my life is whether or not I have lived with integrity, a fortitude that stands before difficult situation and painful circumstance. Have I spoken truth, practicing what is good before the eyes of God, maintaining beauty in others’ lives? More importantly, have I done so with a spirit growing into a fortress grounded against the deception of sin, including the pleasure of evil? Do I choose the strength of almighty Christ or the fear of mortal man? Do I live what I believe in?
I know it is spoken for many when I say, thank you Lord, for our dear Lalo. As the priest said prior the lowering of the casket, God gifted him to us for such a time before the return to the dirt. For the rest of his descendants, we press on. We are still in the race. The fight is still ours to have. There is still a garden to be tended. Do we choose to do so with greater fortitude, or do we live only to influence the younger generations to be fragile in vain comfort? Lord, give me hands and heart strong enough to carry a cross.
34 “Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life, and that day catch you by surprise 35 like a trap. For that day will assault everyone who lives on the face of the earth. 36 Be vigilant at all times and pray that you have the strength to escape the tribulations that are imminent and to stand before the Son of Man.”