Howard Thurman, in his journal of meditations today, calls us to reflect and remember forgotten treasures and memories so that on our darker days when everything is going badly we can draw upon those memories to renew our hope.
I had the idea, since it’s Christmas time, to of write on plain tree ornaments one word or short phrases that would capture the ‘gifts’ I’ve received from others, such as “prayer in a cafe” which I’ve done with friends, spoken quietly after the food is served. The memory is sharing the meal with friends.
“Carols in the Mall” would be from the days our church took our praise band and sang carols in the mall one Friday night before Christmas. The memory is all the people who stopped to listen or sang with us, some stayed where they’d stopped for quite a while, enjoying their own memories wrapped in these carols.
“Phone calls” would be the memories of “cancer world days” when a phone call from someone was a life-line that I need to get me through that day in particular.
“Grand Tetons” would be remembering the fantastic vacation we had as a family in a rented camper traveling through mid-western states of such beauty.
My children’s names with their special activities or abilities “football”, “drumline”, “wrestling”, “choir”, “theatre”, “cat-whisperer” would be on my tree. My best friends name with “cups of tea” to remember all the days we sat, tea cups at the ready, for hours of conversations.
These are the memories that revive my hope.