Friday, February 14, 2020

"to be known, rather than remembered.."

i can dream
of the old days,
life was
beautiful then..."

I've never really liked this song. But, that said, it is the perfect keynote for this post. And if I have to listen to it, I would prefer to hear Barbra Steisand's version of "Memory," than any other.

This experience was pivotal in my understanding of healing. It happened over thirty years ago, but the Truth I discovered that day, is as fresh today as the day it flooded my heart.

A relationship that meant everything to me was falling apart at the seams. It would seem that whatever had drawn us together in the beginning had been lost forever. For the other person, but not for me. I wanted our relationship to continue so desperately. I loved him with every ounce of my being.

It was clear to me that he was just not remembering how good it was. How amazing it had been. All the reasons that we had come together in the first place. So I sent him cards filled with reminders. "Remember our first date? Remember those early months when we couldn't wait to meet at the end of the day and share our inspiration and insights. Remember that trip to...

The more I remembered, the farther away he moved from the closeness we had once enjoyed. I felt bereft. It was so easy for me to remember. And I thought those memories were our lifeline back to all the good we had known together.

One day, when things were at their darkest, I woke to a late spring snow storm. The roads were impassable. It would be a "snow day" for me whether I wanted to be home alone or not. And during that time, home alone was excruciating. So many reminders of "how good it had been."

I knew I couldn't "go there," so I made myself a cup of tea and pulled my books, the Bible and Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, off of my desk and curled up in front of the wood stove for a morning of study.

I don't remember what the theme of that week's scriptural study was, but I do remember two things that shifted my heart. One, was the story of Peter's raising of Tabitha from Acts 9, starting at verse 36. Following her passing after an illness, Peter is called to her home, where he finds her friends - weeping widows who who brought him to the upper chamber where she lay surrounded by some of the coats and garments she had made while she was alive.

But it is this next passage that woke me up:

“But Peter
put them all forth..."
I got it. It was suddenly so clear to me. I, too, was clinging to memorials. When all along, divine Love was breathing fresh purpose into our relationship. Immediately on the heels of that realization, a statement from Science and Health came to mind:

“If a friend be with us,
why need we memorials
of that friend."
I knew I had to let go of all the "reasons" from the past. My loved one didn't need to be bombarded with memories, he needed to be trusted. He needed for me to release us both from the past. If we were to continue, it would be because God's purpose for our relationship was still vital to His plan for us.

Another statement from Science and Health helped me arrest that behavior. Eddy says:

"Make no unnecessary inquiries
relative to feelings or disease."

So I stopped. Cold turkey. I stopped asking him how he felt. I stopped wondering "what if..." I worked every day to simply show up in the presence of God's purpose for us.

This isn't about a nice, neatly tied up "healing" of a relationship. Each day we each showed up willing to discover more about our love for God, through our love for each other. But most importantly, I stopped looking backwards to affirm or define my relationships -- with God, with my loved ones, with my body. It allows relationships to evolve with purpose. It requires the discipleship of knowing -- versus remembering It's a spiritual demand that takes devout focus on loving God as the only "I am."

And isn't this what Peter was so clear about. Tabitha wasn't a memory, she was an idea of God. A reflection of divine Mind. And I love the definition of the word "reflect," as "deep thinking or pondering." Tabitha was God was thinking, not what he was remembering. And Peter knew that he too could know her, not through the widow's memorials, but through an understanding of her present identity.

This would have been so edifying for Peter -- the last thing we would have wanted, was to be remembered for his past denials of Christ, but known for the faithful man of God, the faithful apostle he was day-by-day as he fulfilled his holy purpose.

This spiritual demand to know, rather than remember, blesses everyone and everything. I once thought of myself as someone with a great memory. Now I know myself as someone who knows - not remembers - God. As someone who knows Love. It is enough.

offered with Love,


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