Sara Felix Goodrich Lancaster. My mothers mom. Grandmama. My good friend.
My earliest memories of Grandmama encompass her doing things to serve others. She made the best fried chicken I have ever tasted and was always most pleased to serve it to others with a smile and a wave of her hand when the individual went on and on about how good it was.
Weekly Sunday afternoon meals at her home always included a rousing game of cards around the dinner table…of course, that would be after all the dishes were put way. She was patient to help teach my siblings and I to play if we wanted to join in on the adult fun…though the other grown ups would always shoo us away.
I have a vivid memory of her walking into her bedroom one Sunday and there I sat at her dressing table, lipstick all over my face, with several pieces of her jewelry adorning my tiny frame. She sweetly sat down beside me and reminded me that I knew I was not supposed to get into her “good jewelry” and make up. But rather than being confronted by anger, she talked to me about the importance of being obedient and gently helped me put every piece back in it’s felt lined box and nestled in it’s hiding spot in her drawers.
I remember one weekend, while spending the night at her house, she let me pull out two of her beautiful old party dresses and once I was decked out in all her finery she insisted we needed to go show someone. So off we went to her next door neighbors house. When her friend Ella opened the door, she ooohed and aaahed over my “beauty”, walked away from the door, and upon her return handed me a Snickers Bar.
I know that’s an odd memory, but at the time I remember first being shocked I was allowed to wear her beautiful gowns and second that though it was late at night I just got a whole candy bar to myself and she was going to let me tear into it and enjoy every bite!
She had such a way of making me, and everyone else, feel so special. She always had time for me. I have always referred to Grandmama as my Jesus with skin on.
What I know now is that Sara Felix Goodrich Lancaster was dirt poor. She was one of eleven children raised on a share croppers farm in Millville, Kentucky. She married young and my Grandfather was a post man who died of a heart attack, far too young. She spent the rest of her life loving her family, friends and community well.
I can remember my parents scolding her for letting strangers, who were asking for food, into her house. She would serve them right up and sit and chat with them about truth. You see she always had her worn Bible at her fingertips and sharing what was in it with others was as natural as every breath she exhaled.
In the end Alzheimer’s took her. One of my last memories of Grandmama I carry close to my heart…and you should too, she grabbed me by the hands, looked deep into my eyes and said to me, “Tracey all that really matters is love. Love people like Jesus did. It’s all about the love.”
Have you loved like Jesus today?