My 80-Y-O Grandmother’s Faith
By Cindy Zhang, September 30, 2017 06:09 AM
My grandmother, who is around 80, has been a Christian for over two decades. She became a widow after 50 and is still widowed. However, her life is not lonely. As my parents often tell me, "Your grandma is so busy that you must call ahead if you want to see her."
My grandma spends most of her time in her faith: apart from Bible reading and praying at home, she frequently attends gatherings, shares the gospel, and visits others.
She started joining in gatherings and services before I can remember. Later our family moved to a new village where there was no gathering place. She began to evangelize and met Christians in other villages by chance then she found a local church. Her home was the first gathering place in our village. She and her husband knocked out the wall between two rooms, sprayed chalkboard paint on the wall, and placed campstools there.
My grandmother made a fabric cover for her first Bible. When it came to reading the Bible, she took the Bible out of the cover carefully. Although she might not finish even one page all morning, she was delighted. Afterwards, she got an audio Bible player. She told me with excitement that although she had never read the whole Bible before, she had heard the audio Bible twice in less than a year.
She often mentions prayer. She nags me that "prayer is a weapon" each time we meet after being separated for a long time. She always tells me to read the Bible and pray on the phone: "Pray in the morning and evening. Pray when you eat, walk, and do things. Pray for everything..." After I got married she said to me when I got her on the phone that she prayed for my marriage every day that my husband and I could live in harmony, free from quarrels. I remember her prayer when I have a hard time and her prayer gives me courage to overcome difficulties.
For my grandmother, Bible reading and prayer are an essential part of her life. Once she gave a testimony that she had to wear reading glasses to read the Bible, while she could see clearly without glasses after listening to her audio Bible every day and praying in the early morning. She prays daily for each of her relatives and friends by name.
She says that a Christian who doesn't read the Bible, pray, or share the gospel is not a real one. She always tells me that evangelism is what the Lord entrusts to us. In the eyes of our family, she loves dropping in on others to the extent that we often can't find her. Actually, she attends services in the church or shares the gospel with other people. She gives her testimony to everyone whether she knows them or not.
She evangelizes to our relatives all the time, despite being called superstitious or ignorant.
Before my other maternal grandmother died of serious disease, my grandmother urged my mother to share with her even in the final hour. I remembered what she told my mother, "Tell her to call on the Lord Jesus if she feels pain. The Lord will have mercy on her as long as she cries out to the Lord. You also need to guide her to confess her sins and pray." Knowing that she prayed the sinner's prayer, my grandmother finally felt unburdened.
When people mention that many villagers have been reached by her, she replies, "thank God." In addition, she often visits believers. "We should sustain weak believers because they are our brothers and sisters in the Lord."
She also sings hymns and watches Christian testimony CDs at the home of an elderly sister. She said, "I'm just a wizened old lady, not rich or talented. But the Lord chose me, a nobody, so I am grateful."
She can't reason her Christian faith out or speak about doctrines, but her faith is real to me.
- Translated by Karen Luo
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