Lawson writes . . . sharing thoughts and memories

April 19, 2010

Back To Tarpon Springs

Filed under: Uncategorized — lawsonjolly @ 5:00 am

Judy and I drove over to Tarpon Springs a few days ago.  I wrote of this wonderful place in a blog on January 22, 2010.  (If you did not read that blog, I encourage you to do so before reading this blog.)  I told of the days we lived there, and our connections to the sponge docks.

We met family for lunch at our favorite restaurant, Hellas. It is known for its authentic Greek cuisine. It fronts  the docks with all the sponge boats.  Although Tarpon Springs is primarily a tourist attraction, for us it always will be a place of special memories for the time we lived there.

We enjoyed the ride around the bayous and revisiting places of long ago.  We went to our old home.  Have you realized places always seen smaller when you return?  We were stunned at the changes.  Another home had been built below our old place.  We were surprised that a home could be built there because the swamp from the ocean came so close to our home.  So much building has taken place that I doubt that we now could go late in the evenings to gather scallops as we had done so often.

We revisited the old church by the bayou and then the relocation site of the church toward the beach.  We were sadly disappointed in many ways.  We loved the old building where we were members when we lived there.   We took pictures, of course.  The pastorium, next door to the old church, is still there.  That is where Judy’s mother and father were married.  We rode around looking at homes where I could remember I had clients.  Again, houses looked so different in size from what I had recorded in my memory.  But it has been over 45 years ago!

We visited the Cycadia Cemetery.  This is primarily a Greek cemetery and the large stone crosses marking the graves are unlike any other cemetery, except perhaps in Greece.  There are always many artifacts, lanterns, and small structures where food can be left in various family plots.  We went for some research as well as to visit the plot where Judy’s grandparents are buried.

I share this because so often we hear the phrase, “You can’t go home again.”  Perhaps what is meant  is the fact that changes occur and we cannot hold back such changes.  We can enjoy the memories and what we have recorded in our minds, but revisiting can bring joy and sadness.  There is the ever dawning of reality–the way things used to be and what things are today!

I may reflect on the past, but I must not try to live there.  I cannot ever bring things back like they were.  I especially know this in my spiritual journey.  For some who remember wonderful days in your spiritual life, you cannot go back.  And if we remember better days, it is an indication that we have not progressed in our walk with our Lord.  I can remember the past, but I assure you, I do not want to return to those past days. These are the best days ever!  I must not only  live in the present, but I must look forward to the future. I must desire and believe that even tomorrow will be a better day spiritually.  God has blessed the past, and He has blessed today, but oh, what blessings I expect tomorrow!

The Apostle Paul rejoiced in what He had in Christ, but he was not content.  He anticipated more.  He always had a forward look in his spiritual journey.  We must not look back, but look forward to what is before us.  Enjoy memories of the past . . . but be excited about what is ahead if you are living in Christ!

“Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”  (Philippians 3:13,14)

Lawson

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