I think it odd that people wish you a happy Memorial Day. I guess we can and should be grateful in remembering the lives of those we've lost in war or, as it has become, lost who were important to us. The question is how do we remember? Is it by visiting a memorial? To have a moment of silence?
Why do we build memorials? To inspire us? To reflect? How do we memorialize those in our lives who have passed on, but not recognized in the public square such as our service men and women? I've lost grandparents, and while it hurt, two other losses stand out in my mind that more deeply and profoundly affect me and continue to cause reflection today.
One goes back only a few years ago when we were expecting our third child. In viewing the ultrasound and realizing something was wrong, our hearts sank for the child we would never know. And I can't help but think of him anytime we see a family with three kids, I like to think he's riding around on God's shoulders right now. He knew much more than I the moment his tiny heart beat the last time and God gathered him up into his arms, he was already there when we saw his tiny feet and hands for the first time. We planted a tree to remember this little one and I can't help but smile when I look at it now and understand the hope we have in Christ.
I lost one of my good buddies in a motorcycle accident several years ago. I remember reflecting on the idea of memorials then and concluded that the people in our lives build monuments in our hearts. With each interaction placing stone upon stone, and in the case of my friend, left a monument unfinished. We can sit and ponder how it was constructed, each stone in its place, and draw comfort from those moments.....and encourage others to take stones and place them where they will.
We should all be in the business of building memorials in the hearts of others, wherever we go.