The words triggered one of those grief waves.
One in which I remember my mom wheeling out to the living room to say she was rooting for the Yankees while we whooped it up for the Tigers. It’s the last memory I have of being at home with her before her fall.
Who knew that in three months she’d be gone?
I regret not spending more time with her.
She wanted to be cremated. But the thought of her reduced to a small pile of ashes I could sift through my fingers still undoes me.
“It’s just her body,” says my husband.
I know that her spirit took that final journey straight into His arms.
I stand before him as he dips his finger, close my eyes and feel the sign of the cross on my forehead.
He does not speak the words I expect. “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.”
He says one word. “Remember.”
I tear the bread and dip it.
His body broken.
His blood shed.
And I remember.
Remember how Jesus fixed His eyes on Jerusalem and set out for His final journey.
Remember His tears and how He took all my regrets to the cross.
Remember that moments pass like sifted dust but that each moment passes first through His fingers.
Remember that this journey could end with one more breath, that each moment is a gift.
Remember that others will remember, that I carve memories in their minds.
Remember that He remembers me because He’s carved me in his palms.
Remember to fix my eyes on Him so I can run the race and finish this journey without falling.
Remember that one day my spirit will fall into His arms.
And into hers.
Shelly Miller says
Sandy, this made me cry for some reason. Maybe I can feel your grief and it makes me sad. I love this line, Remember that moments pass like sifted dust but that each moment passes first through His fingers. Beautiful! I can feel the emotion of Lent through your words.
Megan Willome says
Oh, I love, love that ending! Yes, one day you will see Him and her again. And how profound to have all that come together for you on Ash Wednesday. Makes perfect sense.
“When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong, Because the LORD is the One who holds his hand.” (Ps. 37:24) And underneath are the everlasting arms…
That hand, those arms….to remember He is holding here until He holds there.
Thanks for your honest sharing of your journey, Sandy.
Sheila Seiler Lagrand says
Thank you for remembering out loud so we could share. This piece is so, so….whole.
Quieted by this lovely piece, friend. Yes, one day… What a Day it Will Be.
A song to share with you, friend?
kd sullivan says
This. is. profound….a moment of Truth. Epiphany to experience Him like this.
Remembering….conjures so much for us in this life who have lived and lost. We remember Jesus and what He did, is still doing! What a day of rejoicing it will be! Lori
That last line just ripped.me.up. Ash Wednesday has this strange way of bringing some of the broken pieces together. So glad it did for you – so glad you made the effort to go! Love you. Praying for you – specifically that you can release any and all regret.
(And I am so with you about the ashes. My husband has always wanted cremation. I finally agreed after asking if we could purchase small plots to bury them. It spooks some people to think about being in the ground, but somehow for me, it brings some kind of comfort. Maybe it’s the ‘dust to dust’ part taking precedence over the ‘ashes to ashes’ part??)
loss… a hard thing made easy by God’s comfort