When our years are over and we stand back and look at our lives, how many specific days will we remember? This is a question I often ask myself. Some time ago, my sister wrote something about how she took her wedding day and had chosen to remember some of the less fortunate things. She made the assertion that she would then take mental pictures of good things that happen.
I guess I'm just not that creative or smart. You see, I can remember lots of things, but it is rare that I purpose to remember something. Yet there are those days, which we all purposefully remember. The day we are married. The days our children are born. The day of graduation perhaps. The day our team won the Super Bowl (if it ever happens). The day we got our first kiss. The day that we finally won something we've strived for our whole lives (short as the life may be up to that point). The day we realize that we are old!
On the other hand, we remember the day we heard of a loved one's death. We also may even remember the death of a famous person. The day we realized that someone didn't really care about us. As I think about this right now, there are a few days I can recall.
The human mind is definitely programmed to remember certain days. And, hopefully, we are all smart enough to take my sister's advice and remember the positive things from that day. It takes purpose to do that. I had a day such as that yesterday. Sunday was the day where I was formally recognized as a member of Orlando Grace Church!
As Pastor Curt Heffelfinger read a series of questions to the 15 or so people joining and a series of equally provocative questions to the current members, I began to think about creating mental pictures of this day. It was the first Sunday that we had a five year old girl with us during the service. As Emily and Jacob watched their mommy and daddy take the oaths of membership, I realized that on this day, I am setting an example for my kids, which they will hopefully never witness again. Kelly and I gave them a very visible, visual picture of committing to a church family.
Committing to a church is a profound step, as is the church committing to you. I thought about the Church Covenant where we agreed to be accountable in the areas of speech, life, love, faith, and purity. How wonderful it is to have accountability! How much more magnificent it is to have trust in those who lovingly hold you accountable. I began to take mental snapshots. I know many things will change at OGC as we continue our journey together (a new building, new members, some people leaving, a new music director [unless we can convince Greg that God has called him here], many new challenges being delivered from the pulpit), but one thing I hope to always remember is the safety I felt on that day.
I felt God's protection through the leaders who taught and interviewed us so that we could join. I felt the warmth of fellowship as those who thanked us for coming both before and after the ceremony. I felt the joy of feeling that we were giving our children a correct picture of submission to leadership. And as time marches on, it may be one of the specific days that I remember, and I am so glad that all of the pictures in my mind are good ones!