Some moments in life swish by us or are wished away.
There are others when we know every millisecond of the event by heart-beat–like when we fall in love, give birth, or answer God calling.
This weekend we celebrated Christmas with my side of the family. We gave my mom a special book that I put together with photos and letters of gratitude from everyone. As Mom began to unwrap it, I felt my heartbeat loudly. Our faces were all flushed, and we all awaited her reaction. Her face showed many emotions, and I could tell she was trying to take it all in. She turned page after page remembering moment after moment. It was overwhelming for her.
When we read her life story together a few months ago, her face reflected memories that were not sacred….memories best left untouched. I remembered that moment too. What I wrote made her remember stories untold and not present in my writing. I felt sad as I watched her struggle. How could I know that she protected me from her own life?
This time I wanted it to be different. The memory book focused on the blessing of family, and we all spoke gratitude to her presence in our lives. She hasn’t been a perfect mother (who is?), but there was much gratitude to be spoken. She began to read some letters, but they were too much. I knew she needed to have her own private memory with the letters. So, she gently looked through the book and then passed it around. My brothers and sisters and their children took turns in groups of three and four looking through it and weeping. What a special, sacred moment.
I’m grateful for this moment, and I will tuck it away on the sacred list of memories. Giving thanks creates a sacred moment as well. I offer thanks to God today for:
294. Warm blankets
295. Kids’ excitement about friend sleepovers
296. Making sugar cookie dough with my girls…taste testing recommended
297. Mom’s face-overwhelmed with emotion
298. Big sisters
299. Soft pajamas
300. Celebrating 14 years of marriage to my bestie
301. Lighting the fourth candle–symbolizing the angels and reminding us to share the Good News. Love has come.
302. Christmas secrets
303. Movie in the park with our church family! Hot chocolate and popcorn!
304. We can rest and let nothing dismay…remember Christ our Savior was born on Christmas day.
305. The countdown…5 days!
Join me in giving thanks!