Remember when…

Last weekend my husband’s son and his family came for a visit. We hadn’t seen them since the first of the year and it was a lovely chance to catch up on the things going on in their lives. And I especially enjoyed talking to one of our granddaughters who is about to enter high school. I marveled at how grown up she is suddenly. And of course, the baby, who isn’t such a baby anymore, was a lot of fun too. The wide-eyed wonder in a little child’s eyes always fills my heart with joy.

About a month before my husband had been cleaning out the attic and found himself going through a big plastic tub of photographs. He divided them out into categories and decided it was time to pass the ones related to his family down to his oldest son.

So during this visit the two of them spent a few hours going through all of those pictures, Danny relating old family stories, some painful, some joyful. The truth is, most of it was painful since his childhood had been less than idyllic, with abuse, death and poverty in the extreme. It was emotional for him on many levels, but I could see that it was also cathartic. He would have called it touching base with the past.

And remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God brought you out from there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm; therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day.

Deuteronomy 5:15

And there’s something to be said for that. If you read the books of the old testament you’ll find a lot of the chapters of each book are spent recounting the prior events. They describe the Israelites’ captivity in Egypt and how God freed them. Then they talk about their wandering in the Wilderness, how they became ungrateful and turned away from God… many, many times. But those stories also constantly remind us that God always has a heart of forgiveness for His people. No matter how many times we fail, no matter how much suffering we go through, God’s love is never ceasing, never-ending.

Remembering where we come from is important.

Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”

Winston Churchill

Mr. Churchill is right, but if we read the Old Testament, we know that it’s very hard to learn from our history. Sometimes it feels like my life is always on repeat.

This morning when we were enjoying the rising of the sun over our cups of coffee, I found myself wondering what I would write about this week. As I considered all that God had done for me, I tried to think of what moment in my life I could remember feeling closest to God. No matter how long I pondered that, I couldn’t think of a singular thing. He’s so big, so full of every good thing I have that its impossible to pin down a moment. Every day, even on tough days, I can find a reason to praise Him, to thank Him, to give Him glory.

But I can remember, very clearly a day when I was separate from Him. When sin had built a wall between us and I was cowering in hiding. I’d been speaking to a very close childhood friend and she was talking about our growing up years and about Jesus and I remember how my heart was broken, how I almost couldn’t breathe because I missed Him in my life. I missed my precious savior and I wanted to be His child again. Yes, I remember that day very clearly because it was the day I felt most separated from my Savior. And I know I never want to be there again.

It’s good for us to look back on those moments, not to wallow in despair or self-pity, but to recognize how far we can go with Christ by our sides. He is our strength, our comfort, our purpose and through Him, we can find a beautiful and fulfilling present. His sacrifice so that we can have that opportunity to live for Him means enjoying every moment is worth it. He makes us worth it.

“See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before me.”

Isaiah 49.16

Are you struggling right now? Please comment below if you need special prayers. I’ll be most honored to write your name in my prayer book. If your requests are private, feel free to share them HERE.

By oliviahardinwriter

When Olivia Hardin started having movie-like dreams in her teens, she had no choice but to begin putting them to paper. Before long, the writing bug had bitten her, and she knew she wanted to be a published author. Several rejections plus a little bit of life later, she was temporarily “cured” of the urge to write. That is, until she met a group of talented and fabulous writers who gave her the direction and encouragement she needed to get lost in the words again. Olivia has attended three different universities over the years and toyed with majors in Computer Technology, English, History and Geology. Then one day she heard the term “road scholar,”' and she knew that was what she wanted to be. Now she “studies” anything and everything just for the joy of learning. She's also an insatiable crafter who only completes about 1 out of 5 projects, a jogger who hates to run, and she’s sometimes accused of being artistic. A native Texas girl, Olivia lives in the beautiful Lone Star state with her husband, Danny, their corgi Bonnie Sue, and their new rescue Heidi Ho.

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