Margie was 91 when she passed away (it’s been several years now). She lived a long, full life. In fact, she had reached the point in life where not only was she not ashamed of her age—she was proud of it. I called her after her last birthday and after telling me her age she informed me that she and another lady were the two oldest members of the congregation —and she was older than the other lady! (I guess if you got it, you can flaunt it).
Margie grew up in a large family (one of eight children), during the hardscrabble years of the Depression. She learned about hard work, sacrifice, commitment to family, and overcoming adversity. She modeled those traits in her life and later instilled them in her family. They served her well during those formative years as well as later in life when her health declined. If you had a chance to visit with Margie during her final years, she would apprise you of her condition when you inquired. Perhaps that day her breathing might be labored or maybe it was the degenerative eye condition she suffered from that was making itself known. Regardless of what it was, she would inevitably conclude her assessment by saying, “But you know, God has been so good to me.” You had to love that about Margie—she wasn’t one to run away from the reality of her condition but she refused to allow herself to be defined by it. She chose to view all of life, even the unpleasant, through the lens of God’s goodness. And because she did this, she had a positive impact upon the lives of others.
In the assisted living center where she lived, she went to breakfast and sang the little song, God is so Good, one morning before they ate. It touched the other residents because from that day on, they would all sing the song before breakfast. That was Margie—she wasn’t a “shout it from the rooftops” type of individual, but you couldn’t be around her very long before she would let you know in her own way Who was at the center of her life. I think we’d all do a better job of sharing Christ if we took our cue from her and instead of trying to be something we’re not, learned to share Him in our own way. That’s what Margie did and it made a difference.