Thoughts About Teresa Albright
Thoughts About Teresa
By Terri McMurray
These last couple of weeks I've spent thinking on opportunities missed and regrets. I've also spent them writing my memories down of Teresa so I don’t forget her love and kindnesses with every intention of reading it at her memorial service. I could list all the reasons and excuses why I didn't, but it no longer matters. Here are a few of my thoughts & memories that I wanted to share.
Our family knew Teresa for what seems a blink of an eye compared to so many friends that surround us. We've lived here for four and a half years, but the last two and a half both her and I have spent fighting medical problems and not spending much time together. I regret the recent time spent apart even though I chose it, foolishly thinking once flu season ended we would have more time. Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. (James 4:14) If her passing on to her reward stirs nothing else inside you, remember this. I do not get to decide how long I or my loved ones have here, so I need to seize what opportunities I have to store up memories until we meet again. I seized the time I had planned and went to visit my family, knowing I would be returning late, because who knows what will happen tomorrow?
I choose to remember the time before, rather than the last year, from the beginning when we moved here with no family and received a wonderful welcome for a young couple with a 2 year old from everyone. Tim has mentioned Teresa's lemonade, and I think everyone associates her with food. I would catch Forrest sneaking cups before the potlucks ever started. Our first Christmas here she called before we left town and asked if she could drop by. What I didn't know is she would come loaded down with baked goodies and presents. My mouth still waters thinking of sinking my teeth into her homemade bread, especially now after going gluten free. She was always cooking everyone's special favorites, and never came empty handed anywhere. When I was pregnant with Silas, I had a difficult time and I don't think a week went by that she didn't cook my family a meal, and sometimes two. And I got lots of extra bread just for being pregnant. She always said what I needed to hear to lift me up and never stopped encouraging me with words and the actions of a woman that genuinely loved. She inspired me to study more and be more. She continued to come and sit through church services when I know it would have been so much easier physically to become a shut in. I am confident it is better to go to this house of mourning, because as greatly as she will be missed, she no longer suffers from her physical pain and afflictions because God has called his child home as promised. I was blessed to have her in my life, and some glad morning we'll meet again.
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) Kevin mentioned her retirement from teaching, and she may not have taught classes, but Teresa still taught what was good and right, and how to show kindness to others.
“Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate. (Prov 31:29-31)