At a funeral liturgy for a 79 year old grandfather, Tommy, his sixteen year old grandson, spoke these words: “Grand pop was the greatest. He always had time for me. I can’t tell you how many times we went fishing together, watched night baseball games or simply cheered at hockey games no matter who won or lost. Grand pop always had a hug for me no matter what!” Tommy’s words spoke sincerely about the ways his grandfather loved him.
What was beautiful about Tommy’s eulogy was his description of how his grandfather found time to be with him as he was growing up. His grandfather seized “precious” present moments like fishing, hugs, sports, and cheers and made them moments of life and love. They were not “extra” just “ordinary” everyday expressions. And what made them great was love.
Tommy’s grandfather understood how love worked. In responding to his grandson, he was answering the Lord’s call “to love one another as I have loved you.” For when we love another person, God is loved. Didn’t Christ say “the greatest commandment is to love God, the second is love your neighbor as yourself ?”
Tommy’s grandfather did this everyday and “without measuring the cost.” Who knows how many times he had to “put his own life on hold” to be with his grandson? Who knows what inconveniences his grandfather endured, appointments he cancelled or personal choices he postponed to be with his grandson?
Yet he did it, because what mattered more was Tommy’s life and Tommy’s well being. Jesus did the same thing for each one of us. He spent his entire time on this earth doing what’s best for us, and all because we matter.
Now Tommy’s grandfather never won a medal as “Grandfather of the Year”, but in Tommy’s eyes he truly is! And Tommy’s eulogy tells us how easy this kind of loving can be.