Monday Morning Devotions-February 5, 2024
Memories are made of…?
The Holy Spirit will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you. John 14:26
I am very sad as I begin to write this devotion. In fact, I don’t feel much like writing today because what I write will
somehow seem inadequate. A dear friend passed away today. He was not just my close friend, but a friend to many. In fact,
he was such a good friend I wrote a book about him a couple of years ago. It is called “11: Making Baseball History.”
This friend to me and countless others is Mike Martin. He was a baseball coach whose Florida State University teams won more games than any coach in any college sport ever. But, beyond that Coach Martin impacted so many lives along the way of players, friends, even opponents. I’m sure each one has their own personal memory of “11.”
So, in memory of this remarkable man let me share with you a devotion I first posted in October 2017.
Memories are Made Of…
One of the good things I have discovered about taking a morning walk is the memories that usually come flooding back. As I have said before, in addition to the physical benefits derived from these walks are also the mental benefits.
It is well documented that physical exercise is good for our health when done in a proper way. Walking or jogging or running accelerates your heart rate so that when you have finished running and the heart returns to a resting rate, it is one that is a lower rate than before. Therefore, the heart does not have to work as hard as before.
Now, I'm not a doctor and I don't know the medical explanation for this. You could probably start firing questions and easily trip me up. I'm only aware of how this works for me by making me feel better, stronger and getting more out of my day.
I have read that walking briskly can lower your risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes. All of these three conditions are risk factors for heart disease and stroke.
Actually, none of that is what I set out to talk about in this devotional but those are important things to remember health wise. One of the key things that I get out of my walks
is spending quiet time with the Lord. I have turned these into prayer walks and while I have gained lots of ideas and direction during these walks one of the key ways this has occurred is through memories.
So, that's what I want to talk about with you. Memories. Their importance and how the Lord uses them if you are open to receiving his messages. Often when I get a little discouraged or at least a little frustrated with the way things are going I start remembering other times in my life. When I start thinking about where I was, say…5 or 10 years ago…and where my life is being lived out today, it doesn't take long to start remembering specific times and circumstances in my life that the Lord has used as a stepping stone to the present.
The thing is that I didn't recognize hardly any of these things, at the time, for what they were and the potential for positive change they represented. For example, and I'm sure I have shared this experience with you before, this was a life-changer for me.
One day I was sitting at my desk in the radio station when a friend of mine came in. He was also an advertiser with us and I was going to help him with his commercial. When I introduced him to our Sales Manager, he started to explain to us where he was earlier, before coming to our office. He was at the Police station.
Obviously, that got our attention. Was he paying a fine? Getting out of jail? Filing a complaint? Or what? Well, none of the above. It seems he was visiting one of the policemen, a friend, who was a member of his church. He said that in a conversation at church, I think it might have been in a small group or Sunday School class, the police officer had shared that he had a group of police officers at the station that he shared a devotion with each week. In fact, he did it on Monday Morning and often shared the message they had studied on Sunday. In other words, he had a Monday Morning Devotion.
Hmmm! Sound familiar? Well, our Sales Manager said, "That sounds like a good idea. Jim, why don't you start one here at the station.” You see how God works? Now those Monday Morning Devotions have been shared on-line with folks in over 100 countries, and in two books---Monday Morning Devotions and the eBook Monday Morning Devotions 2.
Also, these are placed in our Church Newsletter at Good Samaritan and have provided the basis for some of my talks/sermons at various churches. And since I have over 800 devotions on my website at www.writeman.com there will probably be another MMD book forthcoming.
Just to stay on topic my point is that’s a wonderful memory that God provided for me and keeps adding to each week and many people are able to read and be a part of these devotions weekly.
Reminds me of the song "Memories are Made of This" written by Terry Gilkyson, Richard Dehr and Frank Miller in 1955. and made popular by Dean Martin when it says:
"With blessings from above,
served generously with love.
Memories are made of this."
I'm sure you can think of memories from the past…maybe even from yesterday. Or perhaps from childhood. These memories are ones that shaped your life or played some small part in moving you along to a place you never expected or anticipated being.
Sometimes memories are painful ones that change your life dramatically. Still, they are your memories, and they are important to you.
"The quiet walks, the noisy fun,
The ballroom prize we almost won.
We will have these moments to remember."
"Though summer turns to winter.
And the present disappears.
The laughter we were glad to share.
Will echo through the years."
Those thoughts were penned by Al Stillman and the song was originally made popular by The Four Lads and later sung by The LetterMen. Many others have sung this along the way such as Bing Crosby, Barry Manilow, Anne Murray, Louis Armstrong and others.
Memories play a big role in our lives. And it is good to recognize that the Lord is creating new memories for you all the time. You never know. Today could be the day in which a wonderful, lasting memory will become a part of your life forever.
Rest in Peace Coach Martin. Memories of you will always be with us.
Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for those special memories you make a part of our lives. Amen!