A venerable department store chain is on the verge of declaring bankruptcy. In the past few years, hundreds of its stores have closed across the United States. Although the closings came as no surprise as retail shopping has been supplanted by internet commerce sites, it was with some regret when I learned of the closing of one of the stores in the largest shopping center in Honolulu, where I grew up.
During childhood shopping outings with my father, we always seemed to end up in that store and once we entered, headed straight for the candy counter. A relic of bygone times in department stores, the counter was hidden behind a labyrinth of checkout counters and racks of clothing, but no one needed directions since the pungent aroma of freshly popped popcorn was beguiling. The largest sized box was always ordered and my father and I bonded over the shared treat. Eating that popcorn seemed to melt away any anxieties I had at that time. Of course, at that young age, the most serious issues I dealt with was whether I would get a new skateboard or if I was allowed to stay out late with my friends.
It was a simpler period in my life when my most urgent needs and hurts could be fulfilled and resolved by a box of popcorn shared with my father. A wise man once wrote he wished there was a way to know we were in the good old days when we are actually experiencing them and before we left them! So true. My father, the department store, and the popcorn are gone. As life has grown more complex and complicated, I find myself yearning for those popcorn memories that can anesthetize me to the harshness of my present life.
Is there a better way?
He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.
Revelation 21:4 (ESV)
Ravi Zacharias, Christian apologist, and evangelist wrote, “If relationships bring meaning to life, then the ultimate mockery of life is the reality that all relationships are either ruptured by sin or severed by death. Each of us longs for a relationship that cannot be victimized by sin or destroyed by death. That relationship can only be found with God.”
Tears, pain, death…all the result of broken relationships and fragile memories. Why do I seek permanence in the transient and wholeness in broken relationships? God offers a better way. By confessing and repenting of our sins, and trusting in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, the eternal and completely loving relationship we were all created to enjoy can now be ours.
Popcorn memories are good, but with God, the best is yet to come!
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.