Like a kaleidoscope of colors and shapes, I have memories filling the corners of my mind just as the song says.
Life is full of seasons—memory making seasons and remembering memories seasons. Life is short, a mere seventy, eighty, or ninety years. A life is a brief whisper on the pages of time. So, we must be diligent to make those special encounters while we can. Those moments and memories will outlast and be passed beyond our brief timeline.
And those life-changing events rarely cost a bundle.
I’m concerned today’s lifestyles teach young families the wrong message. The most precious technicolor moments of my growing up years were confined to the cost of a little gas and time—and gas was much cheaper than it is today—but salaries were less too. And so was the stress.
Every Wednesday afternoon Dad came home early and Mama packed a picnic supper. My brother, Andy and I climbed in the back seat of Dad’s old Ford and we headed for Little Talbot Island, just outside of Jacksonville, Florida, for an afternoon of swimming, castle building, and fishing. As the sun melted into the sea, we ate our picnic supper in the dunes and watched the wild hogs scour the seashore for left-over morsels from the ocean and the folks.
I remember a particular afternoon when Mama decided she would join Daddy fishing, boasting she could land the bigger catch.
Daddy checked her reel, showed her how to cast beyond the breakers, then he ambled on down the shoreline to find that sweet spot where he would silence her boast. And the game was on!
Andy and I played in the wade pools keeping watchful eyes on Mama. I noticed a man strolling along the beach watching her too. All of a sudden Mama’s squeal could be heard above the crashing waves. She tried to reel the line in to no avail. Then bless Pat, she looped the rod over her shoulder and raced, best she could, through the current toward the shore.
That poor fish didn’t have a chance. She hooked him good and pulled him out of his salt water home quicker’n a skeeter turns into a vampire before stingin’. She danced around, the fish flopped in the sand, and the strolling man came to a stop in front of my overjoyed mother. He announced himself as a local sports broadcaster, asked her name, looked at her trophy, and suggested she listen to his radio program that night.
By this time, curiosity tugged my Dad toward the celebration. Needless to say, his ego a little bruised when he learned the man’s identity and held his empty hook.
Supper on the beach that evening was short. Determined to hear what sports guy had to say about her fish Mama hurried us along. And Daddy? I think he might’ve doubted the guy was really who he claimed to be—until Mama’s fifteen minutes of fame resounded over the car radio on the way home.
All these years later I hold the memory of my Mama smiling so big her ears had to move over to accommodate that grin. And I remember Daddy’s pathetic attempt at proud. Funny thing, I don’t ever remember Mama fishing with Daddy again.
They’ve both gone home with Jesus now, but the smells of ocean breezes and Mama’s fried chicken, the sounds of her glee in catching that fish, and her name announced on the radio play in my heart and mind like yesterday.”
Remember to create those precious times to hide in the corners of your heart and mind—‘Til Jesus comes!
“There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—” (Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV)
What kind of memories are you building with your children—your grandchildren?