Monday, November 11, 2013


Remember what a cold spring we had to endure? Remember when you learned how to read? Rode a bike by yourself? Met your best friend? Married your husband? We tend to remember the good things from the past, and reconstruct the bad things into tolerable memories. Good or bad, memories can carry us away from the present. What we say and do today will have great impact on our future. May God guide us in our words and deeds as we follow His will—that of drawing others to Him.



Whenever I take a long trip, my mind remains stuck at home for several days while my body travels along in the car. I think about the things I didn’t finish before leaving, the phone calls I forgot to make, the bills I might have forgotten to pay.

On the return trip, it’s good memories that remain in my mind. Every time I’ve visited Alaska for a few weeks at a time, I’ve wanted to stay. 

Memories can be powerful. I’ll never forget traveling along the narrow, steep Alaska Highway, viewing the beautiful mountains and glaciers, driving through the tundra that displays a riot of wildflowers. I still picture the spectacular, sunny view of Denali, America’s famous mountain that is shrouded in thick clouds most of the time.

We watched grizzlies tumbling and playing on a patch of snow next to a gravel riverbed, grizzlies eating dandelions along the roadside, and a flock of Dall sheep on a mountainside. Babies jumped and skipped among their grazing parents.

I remember the cool, black rock where I sat watching my grandchildren dig for butter clams at low tide across Katchemak Bay from Homer. Clam and mussel shells covered the beach, crunching under our feet. We enjoyed the taste of tender, bear stew and bear potpie my daughter-in-law cooked, and Russian borsch and perozhki at a Russian-American restaurant. On the beach, we grilled flaky halibut and succulent salmon over a fire.

The pungent odor of Wisconsin cedar leaves reminds me of the rich scent of Sitka spruce. And every time I see a puppy, I’m reminded of the four Malamute pups we brought back on our trip in 2005.

Good memories bring us joy. God, Himself, puts great stock in remembering. The Bible states that He remembers us in our joys and in our afflictions. By the same token, we’re told to remember Him. “For He … appointed a law in Israel that they … may set their hope in God and not forget the works of God, but keep His commandments.” (Psalm 78:5, 7) The New Testament states that we should remember Him in everything we do. “He who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.” (James 1:25) This law of love is meant for all of us. May we never forget God’s great love for us.

Lord, keep our minds from being stuck on the past while remembering the good times. Help us never to forget You and Your constant love and provision. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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