It’s the beginning of a Tuesday evening. Dinner is eaten, the dishes are piled up on the counter. Music bursts from the speakers on the shelf, inviting me to join in its happiness. But I am alone. My husband is at college, my family at home in London and here I am. Just me.
I turn off the music and look around. The dishes wait patiently and they can keep waiting. Washing up is not for me tonight. The house is messy, left over from my sister’s visit. It too can wait. I just want to sit here. Listening to the silence. Feeling my aloneness. Existing in my little world. As I sit, images, sounds, feelings come flooding into my mind. My sister’s laughter. The sounds of our voices mingling and clashing as we sang together. The touch of my husband’s kiss on my neck. His voice speaking the Word to me in our devotions. Good things. Perhaps not physically present but they are here in some way.
My soul feeds on memories, my body on crisps and things don’t look so bad after all.
I love that God created us with memories.
I love being able to take myself back to visit places, see faces and hear songs.
I love that feeling when you remember something wonderful whether it’s a hilarious moment, a fabulous food or a great conversation.
I also love that certain things or places hold special significance to us because of a memory. There’s a cold little bedroom in a cottage in North Wales that I remember fondly because of time spent with my sisters. There’s a sofa in a sitting room in North London that reminds me of getting to know my now husband. There’s a climbing frame in a field full of trees that remembers the many conversations, problems and playtimes of two little girls. There’s a dingy performing arts studio where I listened to, talked and ate with God. There’s a little blue Nissan Micra that has heard many, many prayers and conversations and seen many tears. As I write those examples pictures and words come rushing back to me. And I feel as if I’m back in those places. Saying and hearing those things. With those people. And even though a little blue Micra and a cold bedroom aren’t the most beautiful of places, places where you’d expect to have wonderful memories, they are places which make me smile and remember time spent with people and lessons learned.
I love the thought that for someone a small, navy sofa in a 2 bed flat in the village of Goring on Thames might hold that significance. I want to make my home and my company things which make people remember. Not for the beauty of my home or the sparkle of my wit (though obviously those are both present!) but for the time spent together, the lessons learned, the prayers prayed, the tears cried and the laughter that bounced off the walls. I want to be a God-glorifying, world-beautifying part of memories and lives.
Father, give me grace to be so.