“When you remember me, it means you have carried something of who I am with you, that I have left some mark of who I am on who you are. It means that you can summon me back to your mind even though countless years and miles may stand between us. It means that if we meet again, you will know me. It means that even after I die, you can still see my face and hear my voice and speak to me in your heart.”
We know Buechner is reminding us of a great truth here; a treasured truth, a frightening truth. The treasure comes when we remember the people, living and dead, who profoundly touched our lives and made our lives and us better. The frightening moments come when the memories of those monsters who tried to break us and left us scarred from the relationship find a way to creep once more into our consciousness. We all carry both with us.
One question we must answer, what role will I allow each to have in defining and shaping the life I am called to live today? Which voice will get the greater of my time and attention?
A second question answers the first and is equally important. What influence will I exert in the lives of those around me? Will I be a source of joy and inspiration and become a treasured memory? or act in ways that leave memories to dread and fear? The choice is always ours to make. Jesus wants us to be the treasure. He knows that way, extends us his hand, and bids us to follow him. That’s the journey we are on together.