Definition of Matriarch: The mother and ruler of a family
or of her descendants; a ruler by maternal right.
I knew it would be the last time our eyes would meet. The last time I’d hold her hand, hear her speak my name. I wondered if all the years and the miles had somehow faded who I was to her. Did she remember all we shared…all she’d been to me?
But then her smile confirmed it; her wit and humor, even in her feeble frame with pink gown and rocking chair…the rise and fall of memories still breathing deep, still vivid and alive and my heart danced with her ice-blue eyes. The connection made – hearts embraced.
When the news came this week that she’d breathed her last and gone home to be with Jesus, the word “matriarch” chimed loud and strong, and I struggled with its meaning. The word, a sharp contrast to a beautiful, pure spirit lived out not in capital letters but with humble, simple words. A life without flourish – without pretense, yet in a sense, as a matriarch nonetheless. She held unspoken power, distinction, honor. A matriarch of a different nature, though Grandma would never own it.
I have to believe that there are others like her; those who prefer the sidelines giving support to those on center stage. Those who aren’t about title, recognition or gain, living practically instead of radically.
“Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.”
(Titus 2:3-5) NIV
To me, “Matriarch” couldn’t be defined any better.