Sunday, December 28, 2008

God's Greater Gift

When my mother was pregnant with me she thought she was going to have a little girl. When the doctor told her that the brand new bouncing baby boy had been delivered her idea of naming me after her mother went out the window. Moments later, as I am told, she decided that if she couldn’t name me after her mother that she would do the next best thing and name me after her father.

Old and traditional, I seldom meet other men with the same name, particularly men my age or younger. It is a name that I have come to cherish along the way and value as much as I have come to love the man I was named after.

Today my family lost him. The original ClayStarr. Today I lost him. The only man I’ve ever called grampa. Forever I will carry his name and forever I will carry beautiful memories of him.

I was very happy two days ago when my mother convinced him to come have Christmas dinner with us. Holidays had never been his thing and in old age, he at times forgot that they came and went. In fact I asked him if he was ready for his birthday on the 29th and he told me he didn’t even realize his birthday was coming up in just a few days. I still smiled and just enjoyed knowing he was with all of us on that day.

I thank God I did. I didn’t know that would be the last time I’d see him alive.

God has a plan bigger and greater than anything we could imagine for ourselves. For weeks I had been saying that I wanted a book for Christmas. I told everyone that if I got that book for Christmas I wouldn’t care about anything else. In my little human mind, I thought that would be the ultimate Christmas gift this year. The ultimate Christmas gift however was my whole family getting to spend one last Christmas, one last meal, one last laugh, one last smile, one last hug, with my grampa. It was an invaluable gift for which I will always be grateful to God.