By Helen Luhrs
When my mom died this winter, I realized the generation of my parents was gone. What I learned from them about faith and life was now mine to practice and pass on. To help me remember what I learned and treasure what nuggets of truth I want to share, these Summer Sundays are dedicated to Henry and Edith Blankespoor, my parents.
“The wise in heart are called discerning, and gracious words promote instruction.” Proverbs 16:21
I love words almost as much as I love summer peaches and sunrises and the new green of spring. It was my mom who first taught me to love words. An earlier riser, Mom needed a little nap after “dinner.” Farmers in Iowa have supper at night; dinner is at noon. Before resting, she read to me every day. Going to the library was an event we all looked forward to. But I also knew that words had meaning and power. Correct grammar was an expectation and unkind words were not acceptable. Being able to express verbally what she believed and why was important to Mom.
As a preschooler, I went to the Willing Workers afternoon Bible ladies aid with Mom. It was there I learned just how much Mom knew and just how wise she was. She studied her lesson and she knew her Bible. The other women asked her questions and she answered confidently and graciously. Later she led that same Willing Workers group for twenty-two years. I remember her papers spread all over the table with several Bible commentaries open and pages of notes on each lesson. Mom studied her Bible lesson so she could teach with discernment. If she wanted others to listen to her views on faith, she knew she had to support them with the very Word of God and she did. She could cross-match Bible passages with the best of pastors and lovingly assure those who doubted God’s grace. I want to know my Bible like my Mom did and be wise in heart.
Lord, help me study the Bible in order to be wise and discerning. Help me use words to teach and to spread kindness.
An Iowa woman to the core, Helen Luhrs is a high school teacher who lives out in the country near Knoxville, Iowa. Helen and Lee have four married daughters, five grandchildren, a graceful prairie, and a square foot garden.