Fear and Honor

There was no pretending. I was 4 years old and Grandpa had called me to the wheel of the boat and told me to “take it”. Ever since I could remember we had made the annual trip up to the cottage at the end of May. The island, seven miles out from the mainland, kept our beautiful cottages, one for each family built with blood, sweat and tears of love. Our cottages are each quite private on the tiny island, yet not more than a short hike away from one another. With each summer comes the wonderful tradition of everyone converging onto this very special place.

The boat trip out to the island and those seven miles, were each lesson makers. The lake is full of landmarks and the familiar call by Grandpa for,  “all hands on deck” as we navigated for shoals, steering the nose of the boat through rough and calm waters guided by buoys and declarations of  “steady as she goes”. All sweet and special moments of the trip.

And now my Grandpa had not only told me to take the wheel but had climbed into the seat behind me! What fear gripped my heart as I assumed the position, scanning the horizon and marking the path for “seven mile narrows”, the familiar milestone which meant we were almost there. That day my heart swelled with another emotion too, great honor. My Grandfather had believed in me, no questions or hesitation. He believed in me! In that moment my heart was given the gift of a lifetime and one that continues to this day, one of distinction and inspired trust in God, myself and others.

Thank you Grandpa for this precious inheritance.  

“Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly and they will show themselves great”.

 Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 – 1882) - Philosopher, Poet, Author, Essayist