Some personalities are hard to capture in words. Lettie is one of those.
She was a force.
I never knew her age but somewhere in her 60’s when we met her she was as energetic as ones half her age. Her days were largely spent helping others. She seemed to know just the right time to drop off flowers to someone feeling especially lonely that day.
Lettie was one of the pillars of this tiny congregation we’d been appointed to. She took leadership over a group of senior women working more behind the scenes. She was most comfortable in the kitchen although she didn’t shy away from talking.
Wednesday nights often found Lettie in the church kitchen helping feed the 30 kids who came through our doors. From pre-school to high school they lined up to give her a hug as she held her arms open wide.
Somewhere in Lettie’s life, she’d found herself in AA. It wasn’t something she talked about nor was it something she hid.
Life hadn’t been easy for Lettie and while she was giving of herself to others most days, once a month she’d make the 5-hour drive north to visit her husband in the state prison. In many ways, her husband’s imprisonment was her freedom. She made no bones about his wicked ways. It was as matter of fact as was her being in recovery.
Through Lettie’s giving, she received the gift of gratitude. It seems an oxymoron to get when you give but her life bubbled over with gratitude. She was grateful for God’s saving grace. She was thankful for daughters who loved and served God. Gratitude doesn’t make room for pity or complaining. She did neither.
Lettie was as imperfect as the rest of us. But she was faithful to the one who was restoring her life one day at a time.