How Do YOU Remember “The Times of Your Life”?

By on December 1, 2011

By Karen Lembo –

Do you remember that sappy song Kodak used in their old ads: “Good morning yesterday…you wake up, and time has slipped away…”? It may be a bit overly sentimental, but there’s nothing like breaking out old photos and home movies during the holidays and reliving special memories with those we love. Those photo albums are filled with all the good stuff: the weddings, the births, the vacations, the milestones, and the little moments in between that make life worth living.

Funny, but I can’t imagine sitting in front of an album full of all life’s miserable moments, my mistakes, the times others disappointed me, and all the mournful losses of my life. Yet that seems to be the very thing I do in quiet moments alone. It’s like Satan has pulled up a chair beside me and has thrust his book of ugly memories, fears, doubts, worries and disappointments in my face. And you know what? I let him keep doing it because I didn’t realize it was happening–until now.

God whispers: “Hey, close that book. Pick one of mine instead. Instead of an album of your failures, we can remember the times you obeyed me and blessed others with the gifts I’ve given you. Instead of the times your loved ones have failed, we can recall the many times they have blessed you and the special qualities that make them so dear. Instead of the losses you have experienced, we can review the many gifts, blessings, and victories with which I have rewarded you for your faith and blessed you simply because I love you.”

Don’t get me wrong, God wants us to process our grief, our anger, and our guilt; He doesn’t want us to ignore our emotions or the pain we have experienced. These are part of the journey, and if we ignore them, we will make our hearts sick. But on the path to healing, God wants us to spend much time in His Presence, remembering His faithfulness and His goodness at all times, even in our painful moments. The key to being “joyful always” (1 Thessalonians 5:16) is to control what we choose to dwell on, especially when we are feeling blue: “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things” (Philippians 4:8).

If you are struggling as I am to “keep Christ in Christmas,” let me offer this suggestion: let’s carve out moments to sit quietly before the Lord with a cup of hot tea or cocoa, and let’s invite Him to review with us the pleasant memories of the past year and count our blessings with Him. We might bring along a photo album to jog our memory, and perhaps a journal to keep track of our blessings as they come to mind. I think we’ll be on our way to a much happier New Year if we give it a try.

Dear Lord, You never forget the good times, even if I often do. Please help me share those memories with You, choosing to focus my thoughts on Philippians 4:8 during this Christmas season. Thank You for so many, many blessings. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

 

Karen Lembo is a writer and artist currently residing in Salisbury, MD with her husband Art, and their three children, Emily, Arthur, and Katie. She has extensive experience as a Bible study and small group leader, children’s minister, and Moms in Touch prayer group leader. Karen’s blog, “Living Above the Laundry Pile”, and her artwork can be accessed at www.karenlembo.com

About Karen Lembo

Karen Lembo is a writer and artist currently residing in Salisbury, MD with her husband Art, and their three children, Emily, Arthur, and Katie. She has extensive experience as a Bible study and small group leader, children’s minister, and Moms in Touch prayer group leader. Karen’s blog, “Living Above the Laundry Pile”, and her artwork can be accessed at www.karenlembo.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

How Do YOU Remember “The Times of Your Life”?