THEY SAW A MAN
A TRIBUTE TO HERMAN LEE GRUBBS
THE ENDURING JIM KENT OF MY LIFE
THEY SAW A MAN
In The Spring of His Life
- They saw a tall, good looking, 21 year old college student.
I saw a great looking, strong, protector, and highly desirable man.
- They saw a Catholic boy with no apparent church interest or involvement
I saw a man who to accept me, had to deny the pain of religious hostility in his past .
- They saw a student with no visible financial means.
I saw a man with potential and determination not to be a beggar or a slacker.
They saw a man who lacked social finesse’.
I saw a man who carried himself in such a way, he charmed all he met.
- They saw a man who came from a home where there was dysfunction.
I saw a man who refused to be a part of dysfunction, and was striving to move beyond it.
- They saw a man who smoked and drank beer.
I saw a man who sought his stress relief in familiar habits.
- They saw a small town boy with athletic dreams left behind.
I saw an adaptable man who translated athletic loves, into love of athletics.
- They saw a strong man who could move great things in big ways.
I saw a man who suffered greatly from the efforts and achievements he made.
In the Summer of His Life
- They saw a man exercising his parental controls too strong.
I saw a man protecting and guiding his family to think for themselves, and find God.
- They saw a man who did not bend or yield to their opinions or positions,
I saw a man who had a mind of his own, and felt beholding to no one.
- They saw a man who seemed stern and stubborn.
I saw a man with a flickering light in his eyes when he was mischievous, and who was steadfast.
- They saw a man who spent hours in preparation for his job and his presentations.
I saw a man who desperately wanted to do his best at all times, and be his best at all times..
- They saw a man who would not cut corners or stretch a point.
They Saw a Man in the Autumn of His Life
- They saw a man running, racing, and withdrawing.
I saw a man bedeviled by the reality that life hadn’t been as he expected.
- They saw a man of intolerance and independence.
I saw a man who learned patience, acceptance, and to face being alone, if need be.
- They saw a man who changed his priorities and refused to justify it.
I saw a man clinging to his dignity, and his privacy, and asking for support.
- They saw a man who never cared to “go along” because it was the accepted thing.
I saw a man who decided to make others accept him for who he was, and how he was.
- They saw a man who was a “hard nut to crack”.
I saw a man who had softened beyond all expectation and yielded to the Potter.
They Saw a Man in the Winter of His Life
- They saw a no nonsense, opinionated man, who cut no slack for incompetence.
I saw a man consumed by a passion to see hard work and perseverance rewarded.
- They saw a man who expressed love for his grandchildren yet missed many life events.
I saw a man who tried to balance his physical pain and desires, to have it all with his family.
- They saw a man who could seem to them, bitter and resentful at retirement.
I saw a man who knew the finality of a lifestyle, and believed it was somehow entangled in his worth.
- They saw a man they loved and yet could not penetrate in their perceived fashion.
I saw a man who could not put down the barriers, for fear of cracking himself.
We all saw the same man,
We all loved the same man,
And we all failed the same man.
But, fortunately for all of us,
He saw us as well.
And the one thing we saw, he saw.
It was an honor to write this several years ago as I contemplated the blessing of aging with the one you love. There is a particular blessing in being able to reminisce from your teen years to your seventies with the same person and them understand your frame of reference and have shared many of the relationships you did. In this day of disposable lifestyles, there is something lost in not being able to share the fabric of your life together. Thank you for allowing me to share this remarkable man with you. He is my heart.