In the beginning of relationship, you tend to remember every little milestone.
The first date, the first kiss, the first “I love you.”
As time marches on, however, we tend to forget. It’s hard to remember the first date, when you’re on you’re 100th. Or the first kiss, when you’ve have so many more. The significance of the milestones seem to fade, and with them, perhaps the meaning behind the once-special and now-routine moments we share.
It’s not something that’s unique to romantic relationships. After all, throughout Scripture, God commands His people to “remember” – to remember what He has done for them; to remember how He has demonstrated His love; to remember the moments that He has proven Himself time and time again. In doing so, in remembering His faithfulness of the past, we are often strengthened to face the future.
And the same principle applies to personal relationships. In holding the memories of the past close, we can fully see not only how far we’ve have come, but dwell on the path that we’ve trod to get there. In doing so, we are reminded of the love, affection and faithfulness that we have benefited from along the way.
I thought of this as my husband and I celebrated our engage-iversary. You may have never heard of that before but it’s quite simply the anniversary of the date we got engaged. Every year we acknowledge it. Some years in significant ways; other years by simply reflecting on it. Either way, we remind each other of the date because in remembering it, we are brought back to that wonderful day when he asked me to be his wife, and I answered “yes.” As we celebrate that date, we ask and answer all over again.
We also celebrate our date-iversary – the anniversary of our first date – for similar reasons. While it seem cheesy to some, we always make note of it, for we can see not only how our love began, but the miles it has grown since that first dinner at Chili’s. In reflecting on that day, our gratitude for each other and for how God has molded us increases, and we appreciate the innocence and excitement of a first date as well as the blessings of all our time since then.
This is how we remember. We remember dates. For others, it may be different. For my dad, it was telling stories of how he sang to my mom, and how she sent him brownies and cards during his deployments. The “how” isn’t important, it’s the remembering that matters. Because in remembering, not only do you reflect on the past, your gratitude for the present grows, and you are strengthened for your future.