Earlier this week would have been my Daddy's 70th birthday. I think of him practically every day, but the days leading up to and the day of, he was HEAVILY on my mind. I am often surprised at how I feel the hole of him gone getting bigger because I so often need his wisdom and unique take on life, but at the same time the pain of his loss has begun to change. I can't say that time heals all wounds. I can't say that "you get over it". I CAN say that healing does take place a bit at a time as you celebrate what he GAINED and not what we LOST. Heaven is a celebration.
Bradlee got up that morning and when he saw me wearing a t-shirt from a car show that was dedicated in Dad's honor at his home church, he ran back upstairs and came down wearing a hat dad had bought him.
It was precious. Made my heart smile.
In a soft voice, he said, "Mom, I'm forgetting."
After asking him to explain what he was thinking, I found out that he has very few memories of Grandpa now. My heart shattered into a few more pieces than I realized it could at that moment. Then I realized it's not forgetting---it's just not remembering. Little guy was only 4. He can't have a vault of memories to pull from and he was so young. It makes perfect sense for that to happen. I told him that I would always do my best to make sure he doesn't forget what memories he does have and I will always be happy to tell him stories and share our memories. I reminded him of a few things. I talked to my Sweet T (step-mother) and we all agreed that we would rack our brains searching for memories to make sure we shared with him.
As the day progressed, that same message kept pulsating in my own heart. Throbbing over and over. Louder and louder.
It was no longer about my earthly father, but rather my heavenly father.
I'm forgetting to stop and seek Him like I know I should. I'm forgetting to go to Him first, instead of waiting until I've exhausted multiple other remedies or ideas first. I'm forgetting to SOAK in His word or failing to sit still long enough to listen for His response.
As much as my heart never wants to forget my earthly Dad and I most definitely want to make sure my children remember as many things as possible about him, it's VITAL that I'm remembering what should always be first in my life. When life gets messy, hard, busy and overwhelming....it's easy to forget.
But just as I'm making a proactive choice to remind Bradlee of those memories, I also have to make a proactive choice to make sure I'm seeking my Heavenly Father above all. The Bible doesn't say "seek" whenever....seek when you have no other choice...seek when you have time. It says, multiple times, "SEEK FIRST". I began a word search today of the ways "seek" is used in the Bible and I was shocked to see that it occurs over 350 times. Seek is to be active, not passive. LOOK for me. REMEMBER me. RUN after me. It doesn't say, just wait around and hang out when you feel like it. It's a word of purpose.
Today, just as I committed to my son to not let him forget his memories, I also commit to putting back as a priority to not forget what is most important. To actively SEEK. To not forget.