Growing old has it’s pros and cons. One of the things that annoys and frustrates me the most is losing my mind!!
The other day my husband and I were going out to run some errands and pick up a few things at different stores. We had sat together on the couch the day before and I calmly and thoughtfully had made a list of what we needed and which store we wanted to go to. When the time came to leave I went to get my list beside the couch. It wasn’t there. The search began of all the usual and unusual places I would put said list. No list. Our cry of choice lately was on my lips and out my mouth, “Oh, for crying out loud!!” “Did you put it in your purse?” my husband gently asked while standing a good distance away for self-preservation reasons. “Did you check your pocket?” was his second suggestion. “Yes!! That’s the old one!” I answered NOT gently. “I was sure I left it beside the couch!”. A more detailed search around the couch ensued with no result. Defeated and frustrated I got in the car and off we went. I mean, what is the point of making a list and then forgetting where you put it? As we were driving to our first destination amidst utterations of frustration, I took the old list out of my back pocket and examined it more closely…it was the list I had been looking for but it didn’t have the new items on it! I had remembered making a list but it wasn’t the list I needed! Seriously!!!!
Later that afternoon, as we were making lunch, I gazed out our kitchen window which looks onto our back yard. There was one of the many squirrels we get in our yard, rooting around amongst the crisp, many-coloured leaves in my garden. I had a moment of empathy with it and said to my husband, “We are like the squirrels!! Look at him, he can’t remember where he put his nuts!” Borderline hysterical laughter ensued.
Remembering and being remembered are so important to us as human beings. At our core, it is one of our deepest fears.
When my oldest boy was in grade 1, he was coming home on the bus but I was running late and didn’t make it to our house in time. The rule of the busline was if the parent wasn’t there the child didn’t get dropped off and had to stay on the bus until contact was made. I quickly called the school and was told I could meet him at the next school pickup point. I felt awful and knew he would be upset. When I finally caught up with them and my little one came off the bus in tears, he said “Mommy, I thought you had forgotten me!” Oh sweet boy, as if I ever could forget you!
When my Dad was aging and dealing with several illnesses, he asked his wife, “Do you think the grandkids will remember me?” Yes, Dad, they still remember you lovingly.
We all desire to be remembered and never forgotten. That is why so many peope spend thousands and millions of dollars so they can have a plaque or statue put up with their name on it. Others spend just as much looking for ways to live forever. Cameras, video cameras, movie cameras and cell phones all feed this desire to be remembered. I believe every great ambition is at the heart of it.
Timothy Keller in his wonderful sermon on Praying the Gospel spoke about Christ dying on the cross. He said when Christ cried out “Father, Father, why have you forsaken me?”, the Hebrew context for forsaken is actually ‘forgotten’. When Christ died He became ‘forgotten’ by His Father for a brief time. God the Father turned His face away. The One who had always known perfect relationship and total love was forgotten and left alone in the depths of hell! All for us, so that we would never have to be forgotten.
I am a Star Trek fan from my youth. And when I think of this, I think of that scene from the movie The Wrath of Khan, where Spock is going to die and he places his hand on McCoy’s face and mind melds with him, saying “Remember.” He places his whole memory, feelings and thoughts in McCoy. Oh how I wish the Lord would do that to me! But that is not His way. He is a gentleman and doesn’t force Himself on me. He simply asks me to remember. Remember what He endured for me. Remember He loves me. Remember He is enough!
“Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel,….” 2 Timothy 2:8
It doesn’t matter if I forget my list, or my son or my Dad or even my own name. The most important thing in my whole entire life is to remember that: Christ suffered, died and went to hell on my behalf.
That there is the most amazing love you will ever find, girlfriend!
So if we meet and I forget your name momentarily, be gracious because we all get there. If we meet and I forget Jesus, remind me, tell me the story over and over so I never, ever forget!
“On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night.” Psalm 63:6 NIV
“I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds.” Psalm 77:11-12
This is my prayer, O Lord. May I always remember your love, your sacrifice, your grace, and your Word, no matter what else befalls me, no matter how my body or mind breaks down, grant me this!
And this is my prayer for you, dearly beloved of God. Remember, revisit, rehearse the faithfulness, goodness and blessings He has given you throughout your lives.