Notes from Jan

Remembering Together

June 7, 2016

Past bedtime.  Basil’s and mine. We’d already read a story and sung some songs, when Luke came into their shared room.

“Momo, have I showed you where I keep some special things?”

He turned to a small corner bookshelf, made by his great grandfather, Big Bob, the Baptist. On the shelves were some cards, photos, a small wooden boat, a hand carved whale and a framed photo of Jud and Luke on the boat, heading out to fish.

Then, he handed me a card.

“I read this a lot.”

He handed me the much handled birthday card, written for Luke’s 11th birthday, October 16,2014, while Jud was at MGH.  The following month, Jud was gone.   Gone from sight.

Jud’s handwriting’s unsteady but not his thinking, I noted, while reading  specific affirmations to his eldest grandson.

“Happy Birthday, Crew Mate!”

How like Jud, to approach death, like life, with affirmations and encouragement for the next generation.  Grandfather and grandson teamed up in more than fishing and boating. So much love between them that three months later Luke stood and sang, brave as his Popo, before more people than he’d ever imagined at Jud’s memorial service, to honor that sacred relationship.

Basil, Luke and I sat on the edge of the bed and cried together, but crying doesn’t last. Before long we’re choking on laughs as Basil  took up the challenge of imitating his grandfather making fun of me.

Then Luke started a new round of laughter with, “Remember when Popo ….?”

And we remembered together.

No wonder God calls us to remember.

Relationships need remembering.

Remember when God…?

And maybe that’s at the heart of why church matters.  We  gather together where sometimes we cry, or laugh but always we come to remember.

This do in remembrance of Me.”





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  • Reply Dale Lefever June 7, 2016 at 6:36 pm

    Jan, This might sound strange, but your thoughts brought to my mind a phrase my grandfather used when I would ask why the well water tasted like iron. He would say, “what’s down in the well comes up in the bucket.” I don’t know that this was original by him, but the thought stuck: if you don’t invest, you cannot withdraw. You invested in life and your rewards are special memories.

    Love to all,


  • Reply Mark Taylor June 7, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    I’m glad you can share memories of Popo with the kids.

  • Reply Susan Curry June 8, 2016 at 10:27 am

    I wept so hard at this I couldn’t see the screen. It was like reading a novel…you sensed where it was going before you read the words. Loved listening to Luke sing and what a tender heart he has! So good to share those moments together. Sending a hug loaded with love flying your way! XO

  • Reply wendy lane June 8, 2016 at 8:04 pm

    So precious and so powerful – in so many ways. Hugs with tears and much love,

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