No typo in the title

I first saw the word “gramma” written in 1971 during the summer I spent working as a Mother’s Helper in Chappaqua, New York.  I was so far away from home, and I had been gone for so long that my mother’s mother wrote me several letters signed “Gramma.”

My grandmother left school after eighth grade, and it’s likely that she would have been embarrassed if anyone had suggested that she misspelled the affectionate title used by her twenty-six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.  I didn’t suggest it.  I didn’t even think it.  From the first instant I saw her signature, I knew that Gramma spelled it like it is.  To this day “grandma” looks just a bit pretentious to me.   I would say it sounds pretentious too, but I’ve never heard anyone actually pronounce the “grand” when the word is used in speech.

I named this blog, in part, to honor a woman so beloved by her five daughters that they all chose to live within walking distance of their mother. Gramma was the center of our family universe until the day she died and caused our little world to shift dramatically.  It has been over thirty-six years since that day in September, but there are tears in my eyes as I remember it.

As far as I know, Gramma never taught children in Sunday School, and I would be greatly surprised to discover that she ever participated in a discussion of the Bible as a member of a class.  Gramma fulfilled the calling described in Titus 2:3-5 simply by loving her family in a way that continues to influence us through four generations.  But this page on the web is not about her.  I used the plural possessive in Grammas’ Guide to the Universe because I want to create a space to collect wisdom distilled from the lives of women who love the Lord with heart, soul, and mind.

For those of you who fear that I want to return to the good old days of Leave It to Beaver and Father Knows Best, I state unequivocally that I praise God because, after generations of artificial restrictions, our laws and our culture finally allow women the freedom to choose any career.  God’s original declaration that it is not good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:19) shows clearly that He wants men and women to work side by side.    However, while I rejoice in our just liberation, I stand firmly on the foundation of our Creator’s ultimate design and purpose for women, which also shows clearly in Genesis 2:19.

I have asked the Lord use Grammas’ Guide to the Universe to connect spiritual sisters who want to explore the high and holy calling that He has issued to His daughters in the twenty-first century regardless of age, occupation, or marital status.

Biologically Not a Gramma

I must begin with a confession: I am not a grandmother or even a mother. I am a never-been-married woman who came of age on a college campus in the 70s waving banners (metaphorically) that proclaimed, “Adam was a rough draft!” and “God isn’t dead, He just doesn’t care!”

Forty years later, I realize that only two-thirds of my early philosophy was true: Adam was a rough draft (but then so was Eve) and God certainly isn’t dead. By His compassionate grace, He corrected my deadly error through the transforming light that came with the understanding that God does indeed care very much about everything in His creation. The Lord cares for the grass and the birds (Matthew 6:25-33). He counts the hairs on our heads (Luke 12:7) and knows how often we stand up and sit down (Psalm 139:2). So we can be assured that He cares about lost keys, faulty plumbing, and unpaid bills.

Grammas’ Guide to the Universe is meant to serve as a perpetual reminder that in the harried moments of life we can always reach out to the God who cares. It may seem like standing in front of a clogged toilet is not the time or place for systematic theology, but I believe that is sometimes when we need it the most.

I first learned that lesson from A.W. Tozer. In chapter one of The Knowledge of the Holy, he says that “the man who comes to a right belief about God is relieved of ten thousand temporal problems.” I am not saying that thinking true thoughts about God will miraculously change our circumstances, but rather that it can miraculously adjust our hearts to make it possible for us to rejoice in Him when we face trials of any kind (James1:2).

If that is the way you would like to live your life, I invite you to become part of Grammas’ Guide.