November 21, 2015

A Room to Remember -- Jocelyn Faire

The work to forget, can be as difficult as the trying to remember.

The time is ripe for looking back over the day, the week, the year, and trying to figure out where we have come from and where we are going to, for sifting through the things we have done and the things we have left undone for a clue to who we are and who, for better or worse, we are becoming. But again and again we avoid the long thoughts….We cling to the present out of wariness of the past. And why not, after all? We get confused. We need such escape as we can find. But there is a deeper need yet, I think, and that is the need—not all the time, surely, but from time to time—to enter that still room within us all where the past lives on as a part of the present, where the dead are alive again, where we are most alive ourselves to turnings and to where our journeys have brought us. The name of the room is Remember—the room where with patience, with charity, with quietness of heart, we remember consciously to remember the lives we have lived.”

My mother of ninety-one lives in the room to remember. She may not remember what she had for lunch, but, start her on a memory lane conversation and she can tell you how the fly ball felt as it smacked into her bare hands to clinch the game. She was the heroine of her country school ball tournament that day! Of the days of her drinking husband, she says: Those were hard times, but we got through them.
She has a selective memory. Memory can be revisited with rose coloured glasses.
We write things down so we will remember them. As I re-read my journals I am taken back to some powerful aha moments, when God answered my doubting heart with scripture, song a quotable word or visit from a friend. When I read these raw accounts of grief's darkness I feel both the pain and the hope. I relive the assurance that He has been there in those difficult days, surely He will be here today. When I read the joy filled words, my heart marvels in the memory.

The past and future collide into this moment of today, this present, which is exactly that - a present moment, a gift to be opened and deeply appreciated. I want to live my life in such a way, that when I am my mother's age, my room to remember will be positively full. These journals bear witness to His encouragement.
It seems easier to remember the negative, mulling it over and over, than to remember the positive. There is a daily battle for joy going on here, and one of my renewable resources is to have positive words of encouragement posted in all rooms to remind me that life is beautiful, and I am part of that beauty. 
I used to joke that I needed to wear a name tag, so I would not forget who I was. That is closer to the truth than I admit—too often I forget who I am, and who my true Father is. Today I want each of us to remember that we are loved, our lives and our writing has been purposed, and there is much beauty in this world.
Remember who you are serving!!

Daily we choose the room we spend our time in, and we choose to let the Son-shine in.

Ps 103:14 He remembers that we are made of dust. This reminds me, as does Buechner in his quote, that we should enter these rooms of remembrance with kindness (for ourselves) and with quietness of heart and mind.

Image from Global leadership quotes-

Jocelyn is the Author of Who is Talking out Of My Head, Grief as an out of Body Experience.  She blogs at:


  1. Jocelyn, I had not heard of Buechner before. I love his sentiments, and you've built on them both with beautiful words and with wisdom. In light of today's world situation, I feel challenged by your post to ask the Lord how I can share the joy I have in him with those in my community who are so afraid of the crisis across the ocean. And maybe, one day, I'll be asked to share with some of the people from over there, too... Lord, search my heart and show me your way.

    1. We do cling to the present out of wariness of the past, and also avoidance and fear of change ... and yet change happens, our challenge is to live beyond fear.

  2. Buechner's words are powerful - as are yours. thank you for this post

    1. Buechner certainly gives much to think about.

  3. "Daily we choose the room we will spend our time in". This phrase will play through my mind over the next few days. Thank you for your beautiful words.

  4. It has been powerful for me to realize we have ability to choose these rooms we dwell in.

  5. I really relate to the analogy of rooms of remembrance...thank you for this.


Thank you for taking the time to join in the conversation. Our writers appreciate receiving your feedback on posts you have found helpful or meaningful in some way.