So many times, as my kids are doing cute or funny things, I yell, “Stop, wait! No, keep doing that! I’m going to run to get my phone/camera”…and inevitably I miss the moment. The belated picture is never as good as the original inspiration. I have the urge to capture every endearing action because I’ve been told that these are the days I will look back to wistfully, wishing I could go back and relive every moment with my small, growing children. It does feel that way sometimes, as I truly love and will miss their every stage. But my perspective changed recently.
I received the gift of a near-miss with the life of my father. My husband and I received a call from my brother in the middle of an early-January night telling us that my 79-year-old dad had been taken to the hospital after suffering a stroke. It was hard to absorb his message in our half-asleep state, but we knew it wasn’t good. All I could say to my husband after we hung up was “I’m not ready.” By the grace of God it turned out to be a mini-stroke with minimal lasting damage as he soon regained his mobility and ability to speak. He was able to fly two hours to visit our family two weeks later. We have learned to cherish this gift of time.
The idea that I should continually strive to photographically document every second with my young family because my future will not be as rosy understates the importance of the role of the aged in family life. While I’m sure that many older parents look back fondly on their children’s early years, the elderly are not called to be stuck in the past. They are still called to live out their purpose in God’s plan in the here-and-now, as are we all.
So maybe I shouldn’t make the mad dash for the camera so often but instead just live these precious moments, believing that God will implant the right memories in my heart as He sees fit to serve His greater glory in my every life stage.
Copyright Sharon Rayner 2016