Name: Elsie Penduck
Relation – Beloved Grandmother
Inspiration: Believe always in the provision of God
In 1955 Elsie Penduck became a widow after her husband died from a heart problem. Her husband a preacher, beloved father and sole provider had suddenly died to leave Elsie a grieving young mother with two young children aged 10 and 7 as the sole provider and influence on her children’s lives.
Elsie did what she had to do and went to work. Sometimes working ten to twelve hour days all so she could provide for her two young children. Many would have said her children would go off the rails. No father figure in their lives, a mother who was hardly home and two children who spent many days on their own in their government subsidized home in Newport, South Wales.
However, these kids did not go off the rails; yes, maybe they were a little mischievous and got into a little trouble from time to time, but all in all they were good kids. They grew up to love God and devote their lives to his service. These two kids didn’t go the direction of so many would have in their position all because Elsie did one thing, that was to leave their lives in the palm of God’s hands.
My father would tell me stories of waking up in the middle of the night to go downstairs into the kitchen for a glass of water and find his mother, Elsie knelt on the cold kitchen floor sobbing her heart out before God in prayer. He said even though she worked crazy hours and had two kids to care for that she never missed a weekly prayer meeting. He told me that money was tight, but through Elsie’s pure faith God always provided.
One story I heard from my father shows Elsie’s faith in a nutshell:
One night while at the church mid-week bible study they had a visit from a missionary. As the missionary talked about their work and needs Elsie felt moved in her spirit to give to this missionary. After the missionary had preached it was time for the offering plate to come around. As it did, Elsie felt God say to give one pound. The problem? This was all she had in her purse and that pound was to pay the gas bill the next day. Elsie didn’t have anymore money and if she gave that pound, the gas would have been cut off. Well Elsie did what she felt God say, she gave the pound. As she walked home she just believed that God would supernaturally provide. When she arrived home, my father came to her with a wrinkled up five pound note (think your electric bill multiplied by five!). My father told her he had been on his way home from school when he saw something stuck in a fence, it was the five pound note. That day God provided. Everyday God provided!
My Grandmother Elsie died when I was four years old, but she was a woman who has inspired my life. Her desire for God was so pure and authentic. Her belief in God and his provision was off the charts. Elsie Penduck inspires me to believe that nothing is too difficult for God. I pray that the legacy of prayer and faith that Elsie started can and will continue through my life.