There are certain times of the year that bring beautiful – and often painful – memories to my mind. There are birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, and sometimes just plain old “ordinary” days that for some reason have special significance to me because of a special event that may have occurred on that day.
I was in my office this morning, talking with a fellow staff member, and we got to talking about Thanksgiving. Now, for me, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because I so closely associate it with family and friends and just wonderful times of fellowship with my mom and dad and best friend (actually more like a sister), Susan. Turkey and all the stuff (pardon the pun) that goes with it is not necessarily part of the picture. In fact the most joyous Thanksgiving I spent in recent years was in the St. Louis airport sharing a ham sandwich with my mom as we waited to board a plane to come home to New Jersey. You see my mom had nearly died a week earlier and had just been released from the hospital that morning so we could return home.
It didn’t matter that we weren’t seated at the dining room table set with her best dishes or that we weren’t eating turkey, mashed potatoes, and her famous oyster dressing. What mattered was that we were together, and that God had chosen to deliver her from the pneumonia and congestive heart failure, and was giving her the strength to come home.
Even now as I write this, I am crying because the memories are so bittersweet. But there will come a day when I will no longer need to remember, because the memories will not be, in effect memories, but eternal reality. The tears I am now shedding will disappear as I join with my mom and dad, and so many other dear Christian friends in rejoicing in the very presence of God and praising Him eternally for His awesome majesty and sovereignty. No more tears shed as we dwell in the eternal present filled with His presence. He has prepared a place for me (John 14:2-3), where I will dwell with Him forever.
Even Christ’s words from I Corinthians 11 regarding the remembrance of His death and resurrection won’t be necessary any longer since we will be living in His presence and remembrance will not be necessary.
So the tears I shed now are tears of sadness and of joy – and yes, tears of hope, too – as I KNOW that some day my memories will no longer be necessary. Dwelling in the very presence of God and knowing that I am there for eternity – can I comprehend it? No, not really. Do I believe it – absolutely positively! Praise the Lord
Written by Lynn Randall: Lynn is the Director of Human Resources at America’s KESWICK. She is active in her church and is a gifted planner and organizer. She has a real heart for people as evidenced by her care, concern, and practical encouragement.