by Barbara Rainey
A book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the LORD and who esteem His name. MALACHI 3:16
When I was home-schooling our children during their early grades, I had them keep a daily journal as a way of teaching them writing skills. We found that this idea extended naturally into our vacations. I would bring my camera along and take pictures throughout the trips we took, and the children later glued the photos into their "vacation books."
Many times the children didn't want to journal, but I made them do it anyway. With the younger ones, I acted as scribe. I would say, "Tell me what you did today," and then I'd write what they told me as fast as I could. They would scribble pictures in the margins and at the bottom of the pages.
These vacation books are humorous, but they record serious memories, too. One of the entries from Benjamin's journal, written on a trip to Colorado in 1984, has a drawing of what must be an oil pump. Next to it, in his own handwriting, are the words "We saw 200 oil pumps." And then, just as matter-of-factly, "Samuel invited Jesus into his heart, age 6." What a great way to have this moment captured in time, in context and in writing.
I'm not so sure our kids appreciated the discipline of journaling when they were young, but I know they appreciate having their books now. I've seen them pull the journals off the shelf many times and enjoy looking at their drawings and pictures. Many details about these events would have been lost and forgotten if not kept and treasured along the way.
I encourage one of you to take on the role of family historian and curator. It can take some extra effort and planning ahead, but I promise you it'll be worth it. Your family will be glad they had a memory catcher in their midst.
Which one of you will promise to take the lead in memory-catching? How will you collect the memories?
Take a few moments to recall what God has done in your marriage and family and give thanks.