Work Hard Love Well


When I met Bernadean, she’d already had multiple back surgeries to repair damage from former surgeries that all began when she’d fallen off a ladder twenty years prior. 

To see her energy and work ethic, you’d never guess the pain she’d faced. 

Just after I married her son, she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. 








But with her trademark work ethic, she merely adjusted the gauges of her life to manage mobility while owning and operating two thriving Bible bookstores.

Where did this inner drive come from? Where did she learn how to work so hard?
In a word: hoeing. Bernadean wielded a hoe across acres of vegetables like a surgeon uses a scalpel during surgery. 

She and her siblings were migrant farm workers—following the crops—moving from state to state as needed. 

Yet, as a child, she thrived in school. With 11 siblings, money was tight. She re-purposed her hand-me-down dresses with a flair that came from sewing skills honed by necessity.





She knew complaining about the hard work wouldn’t put food on the table. It was a family commitment.

This was long before I knew her, but these roots made my mother-in-law into one of the most dynamic women I know. She values hard work. 

She treasures her family. She loves to help how she can.



But now she’s needing a bit of help herself. Life gets hard for the elderly. 

She’s given enough already, but I only ask for one more thing from this incredible woman—that she share more of her stories with me. 

These stories contain her core value that I need to hold onto: work hard and love well. 


Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate. Proverbs 31:31

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