“Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.”—Colossians 4:2 (NLT)
November 6th will be 12 years since my dad’s passing. When you have a close relationship with your father as I did, you can’t help but miss him. He was the rock in our family. He loved being around all of his children and grandchildren.
Not only has it been 12 years since his death, but this past weekend, my nephew, his first grandchild got married. This is the third wedding he has missed. All of the children and grandchildren are together in one place for all of the celebrating and the one thing missing has been him. At each wedding his absence has been felt but at the same time we have found ways to commemorate his life at each ceremony.
My niece had a charm in her bouquet as a reminder as well as carried one of his handkerchiefs with her. At my son’s wedding I had photos of he and my dad printed on one last handkerchief of his. My son kept it in his pocket. We also did a toast from a bottle of whiskey that had been my dad’s.
Now out of handkerchiefs, we were at a loss at how my nephew could have a part of my dad at his wedding with him. For some reason my sister-in-law pulled out this photo of my dad where you could vividly see his hands and said, “look at how Nico has the exact same hands as your dad.” This reminded me of a pinky ring my dad used to wear that I had, which I was able to give to my nephew to wear.
Sometimes God will bestow an unexpected gift like we received at my son’s wedding. One of my sister-in-law’s took a photo of him and his wife for their first dance. The time stamp on it was 7:27….my dad’s birthday. God is so sweet to give us gifts like this, but we have to be looking for them. So while, my dad hasn’t physically been present at his grandchildren’s weddings, I give thanks to God that we were all able to have a dad, grandfather and father-in-law like him in our lives for as long as we did.
Is there someone whose presence you are going to miss around the Thanksgiving table this year? What can you do to honor their memory rather than grieve it? Can you bake one of their famous recipes or play a favorite song of theirs? It doesn’t have to be much, just a little something to remember them. That is how we honor them….finding joy and giving thanks for the comforting memories we will carry with us always.
This month’s memory verse,“Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.”—Colossians 4:2 can help you to stay focused during your prayer time and remind you to have a thankful heart as you pray.
Help me to remove distractions during my prayer time with You. I ask that You give me a grateful heart that will remind me of all the blessings that You have given me. I know that You will bless me and guide my day, when I spend time in Your presence. I pray these things in the name of Jesus. Amen.
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