Our Family Album
Today, I am starting a new “mid-week” musing series, which will continue each Wednesday for a few weeks. It will be excerpts from a book I wrote in 2012 about our family experiences. Our story has been somewhat unique, although I guess when you think about it every family’s story is unique. At any rate, I wanted to share some insight into the backstory of my musings. Perhaps you will find it interesting. If not, you can always skips Wednesdays.
Introduction To The Brewer Family
Steven, Eileen, Joshua & Joel
Established November 22, 1975
Joshua 24:14-15 – “Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness…But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve…But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” (NIV 1984)
In many respects, Our Family Album is no different than most. Proudly displayed in its pages are pictures that celebrate the joys of life, its milestones and special moments. It contains snapshots of weddings, births, anniversaries, birthdays, graduations, baptisms and promotions. These images are a collection of life’s experiences. Experiences that can never be captured on film as adequately as they are in our memory. Nevertheless they are images that we savor and cherish. But they are much more than images. They are the feelings and emotions behind the pictures. The feelings may not be as intense as they once were and the emotions may not move us as they did at that particular moment in time. But the memories and the images are all we have left of the moment. Moments that we want to hold onto and never ever let go.
But Our Family Album also contains images of life’s experiences that were not so happy. There are pictures that commemorate life’s sorrows, its periods of misery, moments of grief and disappointment. There are snapshots of blindness, kidney failure, disabling handicaps, job losses and the death of a son and brother. These images take their place alongside the happy ones. We cannot remove them. We cannot blot them out. And if we could, Our Family Album would not be complete, like a photo-album with empty spaces where pictures should be but are missing. For there are feelings and emotions that go along with these pictures too. Feelings that, like the happy ones, are not as intense as they once were. Perhaps a blessing, since they are feelings and memories that we would just as soon forget. But we dare not. For they are just as much a part of who we are, and who we are becoming. Maybe even more so.
For this reason we open Our Family Album, our collection of memories, to provide a glimpse into how God has brought about good and how He has blessed in the midst of affliction and sorrow as well as blessings and joy. As these pictures come into focus it becomes apparent that in reality, it is a part of His family album that is being viewed, not ours. He is the master photographer who, in His mysterious wisdom, has arranged each picture, the good and the bad, just as He needed them to be. Thumbing through its pages, if anything is admirable or praiseworthy, the honor belongs to God, not us.
“All of us are writing a story with our lives – one that affects others now and in the future. Are we living to please God? We don’t know when the Lord will call us home. Let’s live every day with an eye towards the harvest.” (Excerpt from Our Daily Bread, October 7, 2011, by Dave Branon).
Ours is just one story. We hope that it has pleased God.
Next week, “Cain’t & Able: A Tale Of Two Siblings,” the beginning of our album. Stay tuned and don’t touch that dial…