Remembering Nanny and the Hope That Overcomes the grave

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Good morning, words cannot express how difficult this is. I preach 3 times a week, and have been preaching for almost 10 years now. However when someone you love like a second mother leaves, it is difficult to come up with words that could do her justice.
So this morning, I am thankful that I have the chance to say a few things to remember Nanny and the legacy she has left behind. Mary Clyde Lacy Kemp. Right now i believe she is in Heaven wanting to “peel me one” for mentioning her middle name. But that was something that me and Robby and most in the family called her to poke fun at her.
She said she didn’t like it, but every time she would act aggravated she would smile and laugh. How could I describe her to you? She was small in frame standing only about 5 feet on a good day, but on most days she stood larger than life.
She is what I like to call a character, she was definitely the most unique woman I have ever met in my life. I hope to paint a picture of just who she was and who I learned that she was after I matured with age.
Nanny thats how we all knew her. I could say that if my PawPaw hadn’t called her by her name I wouldn’t have thought she had one. All she ever was to us was mamma, Nanny. This spoke volumes about her family values. She was loyal, and faithful to her husband whom she loved until the day he went home to be with the Lord.
This was what made Nanny Nanny she was sold out committed to her family even to a fault.
COMMITMENT- This was what made Nanny Nanny she was sold out committed to her family even to a fault. there is nothing she wouldn’t do for her family.
Heres what I remember about her strength and commitment to show us all love. I remember before the sun rose she would be up blaring the morning news. The smell of coffee and cinnamon rolls, or pigs in the blanket, or bacon or fried potatoes filled the double wide.
I would walk in wiping my eyes from the drive over, or simply from coming out of the bedroom since I stayed the night with her many times with Robby and Tray. She was a tremendous short order cook.
Her Son, my uncle would come in an tell her that he wanted something and Nanny would go to work fixing him up before he went in to the sherrifs department or when he got home from a shift.
As I was thinking back the main place I remember Nanny was in the kitchen. She cooked at every meal, and it wasn’t thrown together that woman cooked. I remember coming home from Sunday church as a young man and coming home to the best fried chicken anyone had ever tasted, cornbread, field peas and potato salad, or mac and cheese since she made the best mac and cheese.
Often times her or Pawpaw would carry us to school, and she would be up before daylight cooking for us. She would go to work at Tallahassee Memorial where she would cook all day, then come home and get right back in the kitchen to cook something else.
She was committed to sacrificing herself because she loved her family.
She wold give the shirt off her back if it kept her kids or grandkids warm.
It has been said that it doesn’t matter how many years are in your life but how much life is in your years.
Nanny was filled with spunk and sass, she was always making someone laugh. One minute you would be so mad with her you could scream and the next minute you’d be laughing so hard you were crying. That’s who she was, she told the truth, she loved others and always tried to bring a smile to peoples faces.
Nanny didnt speak the same language as everybody else. She had phrases like “I declare” if you told her something that caught her off guard she would let out a I DECLARE. If you made her mad she would let you know real quick she was about to peel you… something I have never heard anyone say since.
She would keep that promise but ot everytime she threatened. it was really just a saying to let us know she meant business. She had others but those were some I heard her say the most.
She had a quiet wisdom she didn’t have a full highschool education but her wisdom was great. There were many times when she would speak to me in the house in Carrabelle just in conversation and teach me about life, and how you should treat people.
There was something about how we could be bleeding from an injury, a skint knee or busted head which happened alot and we would be crying and she would say “COME HERE BABY COME HERE TO NANNY” and she could get us calm within minutes.
She used words most people dont use anymore. When talking about church, she would say THATS WONDERFUL, Thats beautiful.
When we would fight she would say “YALL BE PURTY NOW”
She would always end her phone conversations with I love you baby. I AM GOING TO MISS THAT
while all this is sweet and well and good dont let her catch yo cheating in a game of rummi or your life would be in danger.
I had the privelege of watching her care for her husband my grandfather in the years up until he died. He had alzhemiers which took his ability to talk, walk, and eat. I watched her and helped her pick him up out of his chair, walk him to the car and then drive with him places.
She never put him in a home but cared for him right by herself, with my mom and i helping every way we could. I watched her change him, wash him, clothe him and cook for him knowing he wasnt going to eat.
Countless nights I laid awake in my bed as a teenager hearing them talk to each other and laugh with each other before the disease took his ability to speak. Every night would end the same way. I love you Baby, I love you to He would reply.
After he wasn’t talking much, I would listen to her talk to him I LOVE YOU BABY. he couldnt hear well so she would repeat it again CT I LOVE YOU… He would chuckle and say yeah.
I learned then that she was strong, strong in ways people arent anymore. She gave and gave and gave of herself, and even with all of her flaws, and she had plenty, she showed me what love, dedication, and commitment looked like.
When the cancer came there were times she wanted to quit but she didn’t she fought until the end with my mom, right there pushing her on.
She loved her kids grandkids and great grandkids. She would give me the update everytime I would coem to visit. she would start with uncle Larry and Aunt Marie, and then she would move right down the list.
Robby, and what was going on with him, Tray and what was going on with him. Dakota and what he was doing, Cheyanne, Ashley right down the list she would give me the low down on the family. Her strength was found in her love.
I fully believe the reason she tried all the treatments is because she loved my mom, and the rest of us.
As cancer racked her body she stayed positive, I asked her once if she was afraid to die. Her response “I’m not scared to die, I know where Im gonna be, I just dont want to leave everybody.
But if it wasnt for everybody else if Id had it my way I would have been with ya PawPaw and mammur years ago.
This was a great comfort to me, I asked her what made her so sure about where she was going? to which she replied “I believe In Jesus Christ”
Today our hearts are saddened because we have lost someone we love, someone we cherished, someone who can never be replaced. some of you may wonder why this casket is closed, it is because this is not Nanny.
She is not here, she has left this world, and she has gone home to glory with Jesus. She is not wandering, she is not drifting along somewhere, and she will not reincarnated. The Bible teaches us that if you belong to the Lord Jesus Christ that when you are absent from the body you are presnt with the Lord.
So what happened when Nanny died?
I am going to allow God to teach us from His Word what happened when she died.
But remember the words of the Lord Jesus Christ:
John 14:
When Nanny took her last breath here on this Earth her soul was carried by angels into the presence of God Himself.
Luke 16:
In Luke chapter 16 Jesus tells a story about two men a rich man and Lazarus. Lazarus wasn’t rich actually the Bible called him a beggar. But he had faith in the true and living God and He was carried by the angels into the presence of god.
Luke 16:22 HCSB
One day the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried.
Im telling you based on Nannys faith in Christ alone for her salvation she was carried by angels into the presence of God in heaven.
What is heaven?
The Bible says that when you pass away angels take us by the hand and take us into the presence of God. In His presence there is fullness of joy unspeakable and full of glory.
The Bible says that Heaven is a physical place, not just a spiritual place, the Bible mentions streams of living water, thrones, there are sights and sounds, and beauty like we cannot fathom.
Revelation tells us that in the throne room of God Nanny stands on a floor of gold that is so pure that it looks as though it is crystal glass.
The throne of God sits in the center, the throne of god is the focal point of Heaven and all the colors of the rainbow shoot out from behind the throne of a loving Father God.
The Bible tells us that Heaven is a place of no pain, where there is no crying, there is no sadness and there is no cancer. Where we are met by loved ones who have gone on before us who have placed their faith in jesus Christ.
theres not alot of things in this life we can be sure of, but one thing we can sure of is how beautiful Heaven is.
In Jesus said that not only is Heaven a place where god lives, but its the place where He will build us a house with His own hands.
today Nanny is in the most beautiful house she has ever lived in, the most perfect house she has ever lived in. Made by the hands of the eternal Son of God jesus Christ.
The same hands that hung the stars in the sky, and all that is in the universe. He built her a house
Why can I say this with certainty?
John 14:1 NKJV
“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.
John 14:
(the gospel)
John 14:2 NKJV
In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
John 14:
John 14:3 NKJV
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.
John 14:4 NKJV
And where I go you know, and the way you know.”
John 14:
John 14:5 NKJV
Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?”
John 14:6 NKJV
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
John 14:7 HCSB
“If you know Me, you will also know My Father. From now on you do know Him and have seen Him.”
(the gospel)
The only way to have your sins forgiven is through the shed blood of Jesus Christ.
If Nanny were here she would tell you one thing. Hell is a real place, not because she is there because I truly do not believe she is. But because in Heaven she has perfect knowledge.
I think if she could describe it to you she would say:
HOW WONDERFUL, HOW BEAUTIFUL, and because she lived her life committed to loving each of you I think she wold tell you that she wants you to come be with her.
I believe Paww-Paw is there, I believe Aunt Iva Dean is there, I believe uncle Frank is there, I believe Great Granny is there, and i believe Pam is there, and all of her issters and brothers.
I even think she is holding her son, who she never got to meet because he was still born.
Those are things I believe in my heart she is doing today right now while we speak, but this is something I am certain she is doing. WORSHIPING JESUS.
Can I ask you a question?
Are you as certain of where you will spend eternity as Nanny was? Have you repented and placed your faith in Jesus Christ for salvation?
She would want you to be sure.
When you get lonely just remember her smiling face and hear that sweet southern voice say I LOVE YOU BABY!
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