Yesterday evening I joined some of the ladies from work for a wonderful home-cooked meal made by our sweet receptionist. I had accepted the invite thinking it would be a good way to get to know the women better and get the chance to see another home (I’ve always loved seeing the inside of different houses).
Little did I know what a treat I was in for. When I walked in I was greeted with the smell of simmering roast beef, crap imperial (everyone eats crab up here), portabella mushrooms stuffed with sausage and herbs, twice baked potatoes, fresh green beans, and warm bread. A feminine crystal punch bowl, sparkling with pink sweetness, waited to dance on our tongues while pimento-cheese and shrimp dip sat proudly on each end-table. A large pitcher of perfect sweet tea chilled in preparation for dinner next to the pineapple pound cake and banana muffins. I couldn’t believe the feast that this amazing woman had prepared…and she made it seem so effortless. She wasn’t stressed and she wasn’t rushing around; she was radiant and joyful because she was in her element.
This woman had commented to me earlier that week that she sometimes wonders what real value there is in what she is doing with her life now. As a widow and mother of four grown boys, she continues to work as our receptionist to keep her days filled and to stay connected to those she has known for years. “So I answer phone calls and assist people who come through the front door” she said. “But I sometimes wonder what the point of it is.” I wonder if she knows how happy she makes each person as she greets them with a sincere smile and a cheerful “Good morning!” I wonder if she knows how many people she blesses by truly caring about their lives and asking how they are really doing. Does she know how the love in her heart is contagious? How her humor is relaxing and easy to be around? I wonder if she has any idea how special it was for me to be a guest at her house… to walk into the warmth and love and to feel almost as if I was her granddaughter.Does she realize the impact her gift of hospitality has on others? Her life is anything but worthless; her time is anything but invaluable. She blessed me so much yesterday night.
With one grandmother living many miles away, and the other long since passed, I greatly miss the role of a grandmother in my life. There is nothing like the warmth, love, food, and home of a precious grandma. This woman who has entered my life, has in many ways begun to love on me like my own grandmother would, and it brings great comfort in an area that is away from my family and friends.
I admired her lovely home filled with burning candles, a glowing fireplace, and gorgeous décor. When I am older, I want to be like her. I want to open my home to others, feed them, offer a place to rest, and spread love through hospitality. That is how my grandmother always was, how my mom is, and how I want to be.
No, this gift in women is anything but worthless.