This time of year is a time for ‘remembering’:
On 5th November we remember Guy Fawkes for what he was attempting to do on that night. But memories of Bonfire night for me always conjure up special memories of happy times spent as a child with family and friends, huddled around the bonfire, eating treacle toffee, black peas and parkin (if you don’t know what they are, then do ask me when you see me), gazing in awe and wonder at the beautiful displays created by the fireworks and writing our names in the air with the sparklers.
A week later, on Remembrance Day, we remember our Service personnel for all they did for us in the 1st and 2nd World Wars and in the many conflicts since. Those who gave their lives so that we may have freedom.
And in many churches, we have also been remembering our loved ones who have gone before us as we have celebrated All Saints Day and All Souls Day. Our remembrance of them will be more about ‘who they were’, rather than ‘what they did’.
I wonder what you will be remembered for in years to come? Will it be for what you did, or for the person you were?
St Paul, in his letter to the Colossians, gives us some guidance as to what we should be like. He says:
You are the people of God; he loved you and chose you for his own. So then, you must clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Be tolerant with one another and forgive one another whenever any of you has a complaint against someone else. You must forgive one another just as the Lord has forgiven you. And to all these qualities add love, which binds all things together in perfect unity.
So I wonder, how will you be remembered? Will it be for the love, compassion and forgiveness that you showed to others or will it be for something else?
Perhaps you would like to use this pray in the coming month. It’s taken from a well known hymn:
Lord, make me a channel of your peace. Where there is hatred let me bring Your love;
Where there is injury, Your pardon, Lord; And where there’s doubt, true faith in You.
Make me a channel of Your peace. Where there’s despair in life let me bring hope;
Where there is darkness, only light; And where there’s sadness, ever joy.
Make me a channel of Your peace. It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
In giving to all men that we receive, and in dying that we’re born to eternal life. Amen
With my best wishes
(Rector of Quinton, Welford, Weston and Long Marston)