Sometimes warm memories creep into my consciousness of blissful days taking turns with my BFF pushing each other on the old rope swing tied fast to a valiant, towering oak that existed long before us. The oak and the swing are likely just a memory now as well. That friendship, promised to last forever by two very well-intentioned, fervent little soulmates is also just a warm memory, though I still remember her birthday every year.
I wrote earlier this week about how God is Outside of Time. This blog is a crucial reminder that we are not.
Time Escapes Us
Looking back now on people I have cared about throughout my life in different places I’ve traveled or lived- I remember them so crisply and the depth of feeling for them remains. Yet for many, I am astonished at the length of time its been since I’ve actually seen them or maybe since I’ve been in contact at all.
I’m the kind of person that treasures long my friendships, holding on to them as long as I can. Facebook deceives me at times, making me feel connected in a way I am not.
Time escapes me.
I long to do so much- to invest so much, to connect so much. Yet, my time is limited and swiftly running down like sand.
I am reminded to do what matters. Say the things that matter to the people they matter to. Say them now and do them now, because we aren’t guaranteed tomorrow.
Time Rushes Headlong
A couple dear young ladies started babysitting my kids when my youngest was 2. They remind me of myself when I was 14 and just started babysitting for family dear to me. The children were 2 and 5.
The mother became a mentor to me and loved me and prayed for me (and my old Ford Escort) more than I knew and definitely more than I deserved. No wonder that car was so reliable! (I didn’t know about that till one of her prayer buddies told me at her funeral). When her youngest was 10, she died of brain cancer.
“I’ve Missed You So Much!”
I had just finished college when she went home, and I came back to serve this dear family for a year. It was a blessing to me to have that time with those precious kids. After that year, they would move on to another city where their dad would get his dream job in a key role at Answers in Genesis‘ Creation Museum, and I would move on into missions for a year.
As I looked in the face of her children 10 and 13 that year, I could still remember her coming home from a date with her husband when her son was 2 and her little guy padding up to her in his bare feet and hugging her knees. She warmly squeezed him in a bent hug and caressed him with a strong but gentle, “I’ve missed you so much!”
I remember thinking- “Really? You’ve only been gone a few hours- and you got to have a date with your husband. I would think you’d be happy for the time- but you really missed them while you were gone?”
She truly treasured her kids- the little and the big moments. Even though I’ve told them, I only wish her kids could see that memory I carry as clearly as I do.
And I can picture her in heaven when they get home saying the same thing.
At the time of this blog, my children are 3 and 5. I hope that I treasure and delight in them as much as this dear mom did her children.
Time Escaped Me
I remember when my grandmother died how I wondered with regret at how little time I spent with her. I visited people in the nursing home regularly and had filled my life so full of ministry and learning and good things. Good but not best.
Yet, I had not made my own grandmother a priority. I realized I had spent more time with other people’s grandparents in my high school years than my living grandma. And I will have that regret as a memory.
Don’t Let Time Escape You
You and I, we only have so much time. Let’s pray for each other that we can use it for what matters most. Let’s engage deeply with those we care about. Let’s get rid of the things that hold us back from one another and embrace each other with our whole hearts. Let’s delight lavishly in each little sweet thing our kids say and do.
Let’s say the things that matter to the people they matter to. And let’s do it today. Because none of us are guaranteed tomorrow.
Have a Memory?
Do you have a memory of someone who made time count? Did someone take the time to encourage you with words from the heart that made a difference in your life? Please share in the comments below.