I believe that pearl necklaces, like life, are beautiful. Each individual event, each day lived, strung together to create something even more beautiful than one pearl by itself. My grandpa, Selmer C. Uhr, who died of cancer during the summer of 2006, is my hero. He lived the best life I have ever seen, allowing God to shape each day. His life is like the pearl necklace that my grandmother wore when she married him. She gave me that necklace for my twelfth birthday. When I wear it I think of my grandpa’s life and how he touched so many others.
My grandpa was raised on a farm in a small town in Iowa by his very strict mother and Norwegian father. After three years at Iowa State, he was drafted into the army. While stationed in Texas, he met my grandma. While he was still in school, he worked a summer as a forester; his closest friend was the mouse who ate his cereal. After he married, he achieved his masters in forest economics from Yale. While living in Florida, he built a house with his two sons.
He has led many house churches and Bible studies, never compromising what he believed. He put an old rice plantation under government protection and took his kids camping and backpacking. His loving relationship with his wife taught and inspired many people to cherish and care for loved ones in their lives. He continued to work as a tree consultant until two weeks before he died. Even now he inspires me to be my best.
I could go on all day about the things that he did for me. He gave me a love for the outdoors, taught me to search for the heart of God and gave me hope that someday I will find a man who will love me as much as he loved my grandma. I hope that like him, I can use knowledge to love and care for others. I hope that someday I will look back on my life and see, like his, a life that was complete, just like my string of pearls.
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