As we ponder the meaning of this Memorial Day, we remember the sacrifices that people have made for our freedoms. This day is one in which we honor those who have served our country. Many of us have loved ones, family, and friends who have willingly given their lives because of their selfless service.
This day may also be memorable in other facets of life. What comes to mind as you remember days past? There have been good days and bad days. Some filled with joy, and some filled with sorrow. There are high points and low points. These personal markers represent significant events, seasons, or turning points in which you may have made a change. Such events involve a life, death, graduation, job, marriage, relocation, or a time of decision. They teach us to enjoy life, embrace love, and grow.
As we reflect how others have affected our lives for our national freedoms, we pass numerous memorials or historical markers across our nation reminding us of their sacrifice and importance. For events that are momentous markers in our lives, we may identify tangible items as memorials to us of how we may have been impacted. Examples include stones set up identifying locations where critical events have occurred, a special book given honoring one who has influenced a life, jewelry passed through generations, and photos or works of art representing a season of life. Memorials can be as simple as words on a page, small rocks or shells, or sand from the seashore. Each time you see the item or visit the location, you are able to tell others of the event it represents.
Many may be in a difficult season of life and have no desire to remember. May I encourage you to consider journaling? Write your thoughts, prayers, blessings, and thanksgivings. At some point, reflect and record what you learn in the process. Personally, this exercise has proven helpful and helps in the healing process. Reread your entries regularly to discover how you have changed and what you have learned. Your writings can make a great impact on, and connection with, someone you meet undergoing similar circumstances.
Our connections challenge for the week: Take a few minutes and identify times in your life that have been particularly significant. Write what happened, when it happened, where it happened, who was involved, and possibly the why. Write words or sentences to help you remember. Then identify a marker to remind you of the event. If the event resulted in a change in your life, describe the change and how you are now affected. Record what lessons you have learned or are learning.
As you perform this exercise, you may discover strength during a difficult season. Remembering these occasions will be etched in your mind and used as a tool to help others. You may also find you are more sensitive to others going through a similar situation. It helps us to be bravely bold as we connect to one another and make a difference!