The Amazing Granny Brand!!

Wow only two weeks to go before I marry my fiancée Julie and the time is rushing by. We have most things organised and I am managing to keep focused on my work with a maximum of 15% of my time being devoted to wedding stuff.

This week has been fun with a stint on Radio Nottingham reviewing the papers, a lovely trip to London to coach my client, a couple more coaching sessions, sorting out my leaflet for my Mental Resilience workshop in June and securing a new client for a keynote talk.

You have to find the right motivation for everything you want to achieve in your business and personal life if you want to succeed. One lady called Granny Brand demonstrates the power of motivation better than anyone I have ever come across and I share her story with you. The details of Granny Smith were published in a publication called Word for Today on 7th April 2015.

The title of the true life story of Granny Brand is ‘Do it with all your might’. “Evelyn Brand felt called by God to go to India. For a single woman in 1909, a calling like that required a lorry load of faith. She married a young man named Jesse and together they began a ministry to the people of rural India, bringing education and medical supplies and building roads to reduce the isolation of the poor. For seven years they went without making a single convert to Christianity. 

But then a priest in a local tribal region developed a fever and grew deathly ill. No one else would go near him, but Evelyn and Jesse nursed him as he was dying. He said, ‘This God, Jesus, must be the true God because only Jesse and Evelyn will care for me in my dying.’ The priest gave his children to them to care for after he died – and that became a spiritual turning point in that part of the world. People began to examine the life and teaching of Jesus, and in increasing numbers began to follow him. 

Evelyn and Jesse had thirteen years of productive service, then Jesse died.  By this time Evelyn was fifty years old, and everyone expected her to return to her home in England. But she wouldn’t do it. She was known and loved for miles around as ‘Granny Brand’, and she stayed another twenty years under the mission board she had served so faithfully. Her son, Paul, came over to see her when she was seventy years old, and this is what he said about his mum; ‘This is how to grow old. Allow everything else to fall away, until those around you only see love.’

At aged seventy she received word from her home mission office that they weren’t going to give her another five year term. A party was held to celebrate her time in India, and everyone there cheered her on. ‘Have a good trip back home,’ they all said. ‘I’ll tell you a little secret,’ she announced, ‘I’m not going back home. I’m staying in India.’ Evelyn had a little shack built with some resources that she had smuggled in. Then she bought a pony to get around the mountains, and this septuagenarian would ride from village to village on horseback to tell people about Jesus. She did that for five years on her own. 

One day, at seventy five years old, she fell and broke her hip. Her son, Paul Brand the eminent doctor, said to her, ‘Mum you’ve had a great run. God’s used you. It’s time to give up now. You can go back home.’ She replied, ‘I’m not going back home.’ She spent another eighteen years travelling from one village to another on horseback. Falls, concussions, sickness, and ageing could not stop her. 

Finally, when she hit ninety-three years old, she could not ride a horse any more. So the men in these villages – because they loved her so much – put her on a stretcher and carried her from one village to another. She lived two more years and gave those years as a gift, carried on a stretcher, to help the poorest of the poor. She died, but she never retired. She just graduated.” 

This true story of Granny Brand is hard to believe. As I sit here writing this I’m in awe of this woman who gave up her entire life to serve the poor in the most difficult of circumstances. The motivation she needed to continue year, after year, after year, is so huge; but that is exactly how she managed to continue through every setback and disaster. If we can capture some of this amazing motivation for our lives then we will achieve wonderful things.

So what motivates you to achieve things in life? As I have mentioned before I have an inner drive to make a difference to people and to leave something good behind and that drives me on. At 61 I’ve realised that it’s not too late to get it right and that is my motivation. How much can I achieve in the next 19 years?

So until next time see if you can dig deep this week and discover what really motivates you and inspires you.

Have a great week and stay positive

Warm regards


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