Ivon and Helen’s children are having their first family reunion this weekend! There will be lots of storytelling and good food. Memories of happy and sad times will flood back as each sibling remembers how it was growing up in a Downing household. Two stories of the same event will not be the same but the one constant in the story telling will be the lessons learned of God’s love for us and our love for each other.
God taught us how important memories are in the Old Testament book of Joshua where the story of how God caused the Jordan River to stop flowing and allowed the Israelites to cross the dry river bed out of the wilderness into the Promised Land(Joshua 4). 12 tribes of Israelites, each with a priest that God had appointed and the ark (box) that contained the Covenant that God had given the people, crossed over on that day. God instructed each of the twelve priests to stop in the middle of the riverbed and pick up a stone to represent each tribe and carry them over into the promised land. They set up the stones in a monument so that “When your children ask their parents in time to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ (Joshua 4:20 NRSV) they will know that the hand of the Lord is mighty” Joshua 4:24)
In the picture you see some of my precious memories. The tea in a china cup reminds me of my grandmother and our times together as she told the stories of growing up in London and coming to America on a steam ship during World War Two. She told stories about her new life as a city girl turned farmer’s wife and raising her children in upstate New York. The jar contains my mother’s recipe for “Green Tomato Mincemeat” that I canned last week. That day contained more memories than I can relate here… (the pie crust covered with cinnamon and sugar was a special memory treat).
The mincemeat tarts topped with hearts represent the memories I am making for my children, grandchildren and great granddaughte . Sweet memories covered with love. They may not enjoy the mincemeat but they will never forget the love it represents in the making.
The Bible reminds me of both my fathers, Heavenly and Earthly! Both loving without measure, no matter what! God wrote the story and Dad lived and retold it.
God’s Son, Jesus Christ, served a special dinner on the night he was betrayed. He took bread, gave thanks, blessed it and said, ”Take eat, this is my body given for you…. Do this in remembrance of me”…Then He a cup of wine said , “This is the blood of the new covenant, drink this in remembrance of me….” (Luke 22:14)
The key word in all of this is “remember”. How we remember times and events, people and places may not always be the same… but the love we share for God and for each other will remain. Like the stones carried up out of the Jordan River bed, the story of God’s love and what He has done, is doing and will do for each of us needs to be told so that “The when the children in the future ask, “what does all of this mean?”, we will remember, retell the story so that they will pass it on!
God Bless You as you make memories for the children in your life!