read to feed the soul

Written by FBJ Women for Women

September 23, 2020

by: Camille Anding


Each day we’re growing away from experiences that we can never repeat. I’ve become particularly aware of this after I’ve watched another year spin its calendar pages instead of turning them.

Perhaps it’s age that causes us to do more reflecting, but there have been so many good times to reflect on for which I am daily grateful. I find myself sorting through past memories and wishing I could collect only those happy ones for our children to remember from their childhood.

I want Eli to remember how he enjoyed eating fresh blackberry jam the way it tasted best – dripping off his biscuit and running in between his fingers. He can forget the chiggers that guarded the blackberries, but the jam was the sticky reward. He won’t ever be the same messy eater, but I have a feeling that jam will never taste quite as good.

I would have him remember the times he was just the right size for his daddy to grab him as he raced toward him and whirl him around in the air. I hope Tahya will remember how she and her brother giggled as they tried to sit on the lawn sprinkler during the hot summer days – long before iPhones and iPads. Eli will recall some of his happiest memories if he remembers sitting on his granddaddy’s lap, helping him drive the tractor. I want him to remember the fishing trips when he watched his daddy and uncles set out fishing lines on the Old River and when he chased his sister on the late afternoon lawn when it was wet and slick with dew.

Tahya’s present schedule is so different from her childhood, but I want her to remember the early mornings when she and her daddy crept out of the house to ride their bikes to the post office. Dishwashing won’t ever be a joy, but she’ll remember when it was on those mornings she spent helping her grandmother.

I want them to remember those times they found total contentment in watching cartoons with a lap tray in front of them that held a bowl of frosted flakes. I hope Eli will remember his faithful bed partner – his teddy bear which brought him comfort in the night “when he couldn’t see God too good.”

Recalling their children’s choir selections is another wish I have for them. One of those songs won’t be packed away with the teddy bear, Little House on the Prairie books, or any of their other memories. It’s “Jesus Loves Me.”

Last night, I got a text before bed from Eli with a recording. It was Major, our grandson, singing “Jesus Loves Me” – perfect pitch with all the right words. It warmed my heart as I considered God’s goodness and the trail of good memories we continue to have. Jesus loved me in the past, loves me in the present, and throughout eternity. That’s a reality not to be confused with fading or fond memories.

“How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings.” Psalm 36:7

Gracious Father, Your hand upon a life makes ALL the difference. Thank You for calling my name and drawing me to You. Your presence is fullness of joy that wraps all my memories in beautiful blessings. All praise to You! Amen.

Camille Anding

Camille Anding


  • Camille Anding is a child of God since age 12.
  • Wife of 53 years to Othel; mother to Tahya and Eli;l grandmother to seven grandchildren and two great-grands.
  • Retired from photography business with Othel. Now carry cameras on their travel adventures.
  • Freelance writer, regular contributor to Hometown magazines, and dedicated to living “my utmost for His highest.”