Instead, Hubby, Haley and I went to visit my Great Aunt Nancy. I love my great aunt, and any other weekend, I would have been delighted to visit her. She lives a couple hours away, so we don’t see her often, and she hadn’t yet met Haley. But during the drive, all I could think about was the fun y’all were having in Texas.
Walking into her townhouse is like stepping into a museum full of family history. Pride in our Norwegian heritage is everywhere, and stories of the past pour of Aunt Nancy like dear friends. Although Aunt Nancy had hip surgery in May, she still embodied the graciousness of her generation, serving the equivalent of a Christmas dinner, complete with party favors, on my Great Grandma Rose’s finest china.
After dinner I helped put away the abundance of leftovers and started loading the dishwasher. “Oh no,” Aunt Nancy said, “the china must be hand washed.”
I groaned (inwardly, I hope). Why would a person serve a meal on dishes that needed to be hand washed? Especially if you’re going to use salad plates and serve twelve side dishes. This was going to take all afternoon to clean up.
Aunt Nancy neatly stacked the plates beside the sink and looked at me. “I’ll do them later.” I knew the way the conversation was going to go. I would argue. No, no, I’ll help. She’d relent, and we’d end up washing the china. As any polite guest would.
She gazed at me and I tried to shutter my thoughts from her discerning eye. “Amy, do you know why your great grandma served her guests on her finest china?”
Easy. “Because she wanted them to feel special.”
"Your Great Grandma Rose always said after the guests had gone home, washing the china gave her time to reflect on their conversations and treasure the memories.”
Later, heading home, the conversation with Aunt Nancy echoed in my head. I realized that missing ACFW is like washing the china. Instead of being upset I missed the 2012 conference, I could choose to reflect and treasure the memories of past years.
And so I did.
Now that my pity party is over, I’d like to hear all about your conference experience. What was the best part of ACFW for you? How did you see God working in your life? I know we’ve got some Ponderer stories about God moving in their lives at the 2012 conference…share with us so we can celebrate with you!
|Haley and Great, Great Aunt Nancy|