Today’s post is from Gayla McKinney. Gayla and her husband Blake live in Missouri where he serves as pastor of First Baptist Church Lee’s Summit. Gayla also served as a prayer coordinator for two LifeWay Women events. You can read more from Blake and Gayla on their blog.

I was looking at the photos on my phone recently and remembering the moments connected to each one.  I have about a million photos of the kids: band photos, dance photos, baking cookies photos, photos from lunch at McDonalds, and every other minute thing we do!  I am a mom with an iPhone, Facebook profile, and Twitter account, so I take and post many photos.

Now, in my defense, we live far from family and many lifelong friends, so I like to think it’s my way of staying in touch.  However, the bottom line is that I want to remember every detail of my children growing up, and I want them to remember us as awesome parents who not only did fun stuff but thought enough of them to document the fun stuff (at this point you may as well know that I was the fourth child and there are no photos of me whatsoever!) Perhaps I’m a bit bitter?

Suddenly, I realized I have zero photos currently of Blake and me together — alone!  That’s probably because of many things, but mostly because we don’t take the time to make memories much anymore.  It’s the time issue of course, and we really aren’t bitter about that, but I want to do better!  This is why I’ve been thinking about some of my favorite memories with Blake lately.

I remember the day he fell on the ice in college at Ouachita Baptist University and broke his front teeth completely!  We weren’t dating then, but he’d made such an impression on me as a really nice guy and the incident was so yucky that a lot of people remember that!  I remember playing 20 questions with him on a really sweaty old church bus on the way home from Panama City Beach, Fla. where we had been chaperones for a youth trip.  Blake asked me if I could date anyone at OBU who would it be, and I said his roommate!  (Again, in my defense, Blake had a very steady girlfriend who was a good friend.)  Thank God for interventions!

I remember our wedding, our moves to and from seminary, our first apartment, our first infertility doctor’s appointment, our first adoption meeting, and the first times we met our children! Somehow, the memory fades right about there…

We’ve become so well intentionally consumed with ministry and kids that we don’t make as many memories these days.  Maybe we’ve just gotten so old that we can’t remember as much! Either way, when I ran across Psalm 77:10-11 the other day it convicted me about our marriage! In the Message paraphrase the writer says, “Once again I’ll go over what God has done, lay out on the table the ancient wonders; I’ll ponder all the things you’ve accomplished, and give a long loving look at your acts…”

I want to make memories from this stage of life that aren’t always connected to the kids so that when they are gone, we’ll still have fresh reasons to proclaim God’s faithfulness and to give a long loving look back at this season in OUR MARRIAGE.  How many times have we seen our friends hit “empty nest” and go one way or the other?  Either they struggle to find each other again or they relish the time to concentrate on each other again!

I want to make memories we will laugh about and linger over!

As we led a Marriage Getaway in Branson a few months ago, we gave couples the unique opportunity to make and document some hilarious memories.  About 30 couples did an old fashioned photo scavenger hunt on that retreat, and it was so much fun to watch!  Couples in their 20’s and couples in their 80′s (and everywhere in between) did the funniest things and then took photos of themselves.  Check out the smiles on these faces!

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This content originally posted here. Re-published with permission.

Interested in investing more in your marriage? Check out LifeWay‘s Festival of Marriage events. You can get away to a fun destination or simulcast it straight into your living room.

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