Amazing Grace: Stewardship Testimony by Judee Vanderpool

Mothers-in laws often get such a bad rap that I thought I would share a positive story about my special mother-in-law, Grace Duncan Vanderpool.  Not only was she a good example for “in-law”, but she was also an excellent model for Christian stewardship.           

Let’s begin with giving time.  Grace was a Sunday school teacher for as long as I knew her and long before that.  She served on various committees throughout her church life.  In fact, the church doors seldom opened without her presence there to participate and encourage.  Her home was always open to visiting guests, preachers, and church family.  She did visitations at homes, funeral parlors, and wherever the need was for comfort and support.  Grace made time for what was important to her.
When it came to talent, Grace was known for her PIES !  Yes, any church activity that required food could always count on her for pies….as well as other wonderful dishes.  Going into her kitchen, I would often find baked pie shells ready to be filled or loaves of bread waiting to be delivered.  As I said before, she had talent for teaching and hospitality, too.  However, standing next to Grace in church services, I quickly discovered that one of her non-talents was singing on key.  But did that stop her – absolutely not!!!  As a daughter-in-law I also appreciated her “talent” for not criticizing or interfering…..that included me and anyone else.  Funny how some of the most obvious talents are overlooked.
That brings us to resources, or money, as we so often hesitate to say.  I know from hearing Scotty talk about his childhood that her children were taught to tithe, and the best example for them was modeled by Grace and Gene, his father.  Raising four boys did not leave a lot of extra cash, but she was faithful to give then and throughout her lifetime.  Even on Social Security she was always doing her part with what she had because of her love for God and His church.
When people ask, “Who was someone that influenced you as a Christian?”, I think of Grace.  I am so thankful to have had her as my mother-in-law, as well as, a role model for Christian stewardship.  She was definitely my “ Amazing Grace”, using her gifts of time, talents, and resources to serve God.
“Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift(s) each of you has received.”  I Peter  4:10

Judee Vanderpool
LABC Stewardship Committee 2011