Death of a Superwoman

granny

This season has been one filled with death for my blood and church families: loss jobs, broken marriages, foreclosed homes, dissolved friendships, and transitioned loved ones. What’s impacted me most is the loss of my Granny, Brunice C. Lewis, my husband’s grandmother. She, like many family matriarchs, was strong, a rock in our family. Granny worked for years as a domestic cook for a wealthy family, but didn’t give all her love and skills to them. She planned and cooked all our holiday meals, bought us gifts apart from holidays, loaned us money, scolded bad deeds, loved us whole. With Granny’s death, we loss the security of a loving woman who took away the need to be strong. She was our strength, the rock on which we leaned. And her death has been causing me to reflect on some lessons that I thought I learned as a recovering strong black woman.

The first lesson is that our trust and hope can’t be in our grannies and big mommas. As much as we love them, as much as they do for us, as much as life knocked them down and they kept getting back up, they cannot be our gods. In our hoping in and running to them for needs we unknowingly deified them. We remember the stories and have seen their lives of how they got over and we know they can help us get over. But many big mommas will tell you up front, “If it wasn’t for God, I wouldn’t have made it.” Hearing their war stories gives us strength, and we often go back to hear the stories as if the stories themselves are the source of our power. But God says, “When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up—the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, your Savior, the Holy One of Israel” (Isaiah 43:2-3a TLB). God is the source of our power and He is the only one who can save. As I recover from the many deaths in my families, particularly my Granny’s death, and from being a self-empowered strong black woman, I remember that Granny did nothing and I can do nothing without the Rock, my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Copyright 2008 By Rhonda J. Smith

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5 responses to “Death of a Superwoman

  1. Hello Minister Rhonda,

    This was an awesome word. You are correct when you say that are gods cannot be in others. God is the only one that can and will carry us through all things. He should be the one we always rely on in times of trouble as well as joy. I personally know Him to be a great provider in my life. There has been nothing that I have been able to do without Him. Please continue to allow God to lead and guide your every step. He is one that will never let you down. I love you.

  2. Vaquita Taylor

    I totally understand and I myself defantly kept you guys in my prayers. For me We did not have really a strong foundation in our family from people holding on to past hurts and never being healed it brought a unforgiving curse for the family. I accepted God and promised that I would be different. My mom was and is my rock other than the Lord Jesus Christ. She was what I seen as strong. Working two jobs going to school and a single mother. Know that I can say I have inherited. I am always on the go and busy and doing to much that’s why it is best to do God’s will instead of what you think you should be doing. God is my rock!

  3. Good word honey! Granny’s death will make all of us think twice about our stewardship or lack thereof. It is my hope and prayer that we are ready to live life without her as our occasional safety net.

  4. Hi Sis Rhonda

    I can relate to you leaning on your grandmother’s strength. I lost my grandmother about 4 yrs ago and she was my strength and knowledge. I knew who GOD was but didn’t have a relationship with him at all. Since her death I have come to know and I’m building a relationship with the Lord. I miss my granny, but I got the best replacement I could ever know and he will never leave me. HALLELUJAH!!!!

  5. First things first: You look good in cyberspace! I’m praying every aspect of your debut is blessed, from the words God gives you to the reception of your flock of readers.

    Back to the post: I think Granny would be proud of the way you’ve used her legacy lead an important discussion. Look at you, preaching and teaching. Go, Rhon!

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