It’s Thanksgiving and I began the day the same way I have for years, with a prayer.
I get away by myself, void of distractions, and go back as far as I can remember, thanking God for all the great memories, no matter how silly. The first time I went to Disneyland with Mom and Dad. Burping with Grandpa after drinking a root beer. Getting my first snare drum (which I still own).
I also can’t help but recall a lot of bad stuff along the stroll down memory lane (the details of which we can skip for now—though they may make it into a future podcast). But even then, I try to find some glimmer of good that came out of it all, which can admittedly be difficult sometimes.
By the end of the prayer, all roads always lead back to my wife. The most thrilling day of my life was the day I saw her, which led to me actually talking to her a week later, which led to her to comprehending that what I really needed was a spiritual reset, which led to me acknowledging Yeshua (Jesus) as Messiah and Savior, which led to us becoming boyfriend/girlfriend, which led to us getting married, which led to four children (as seen in one of my favorite photos, above).
You see how this Thanksgiving prayer works? It’s just what I needed today.
It’s interesting how the farther back we go, the more distant the memories become—even the good ones. As for the bad ones, if I decide to dredge them up I seem to be able to get right back into the moment where I can be hit with a wave of despair—but all these years later I’ve chosen not to pry open those doors and instead focus on that door.
The one marked, Heaven.
When we arrive in our eternal home we are told God “will wipe every tear from [our] eyes. There will be no more death, or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 21:4).
I personally believe when we do get there and reflect back on our past life on Earth, it will be a distant memory. Even the really great things that happened in those days will pale in comparison to the joy we will be filled with as we live with our Creator forever.
And the bad things? They won’t be worth a moment of our time.