When we remember the people who made our life better it reminds us of the goodness of God who blessed us with these relationships. It’s a way to celebrate Memorial Day in addition to what we traditionally do. Listen in to learn how.

For those of you who have been listeners to this podcast for the last year or so you’ve heard me talk about an easy-to-understand method of enhancing our relationships. It’s called the ORA model. Observe – Reflect – Act.

I’ll have links to a few past episodes if you want to understand ORA in more detail. It’s easy to understand, but challenging to put into practice. That’s where listening to this podcast over time will help.

The “R” component of ORA – Reflect has a key component within it that also starts with “R.” It’s Remember. An especially timely relationship skill to consider today in light of the holiday we celebrate in the United States the last Monday in May. Memorial Day. Keep listening to learn more about how the act of remembering can enrich your life.

A different kind of Memorial Day

I first talked about our American Memorial Day holiday back in episode 28. And I’ll be borrowing from it quite heavily in this episode.

In the US, this national holiday began after our Civil War in the 1860s when it was called “Decoration Day.” The name comes from the early tradition of decorating graves with flowers, wreaths, and flags.

We now call it Memorial Day. A day to remember those who have died in service to their country. It’s an important day here in the US, and it happened just a few days ago on May 29 here in 2022.

The last I checked, we have listeners to this podcast in 73 countries, and I know many of them to have similar holidays to honor those who have fallen in service to their country in war. When we remember the people who made our lives better by fighting to protect us, it gives us a greater appreciation of the freedoms we have.

All this got me thinking that I wonder if we could ever have a worldwide Memorial Day to remember the people who made our life better in other ways. In ways more personal to us. Here’s an example of how someone made my life better that I talked about back in episode 28. It’s a story about my friend, Ken.

A friend from Brazil uses my snowblower

Story of my missionary friend, Ken
(If you haven't listened to the podcast, I'm sorry but there ‘s no transcript available for this 4-minute story.)

My missionary friend Ken made my life better in more ways than just blowing the 6 inches of snow off my driveway. He showed me that to be a helpful caring person you don’t need to ask, “How can I help you?” Just do something you think would be helpful. If Ken had actually asked me, “John, how can I help you?” I don’t think it would have occurred to me to answer with “come over and clear our driveway of snow.” He made my life better by being an example – a role model – of how to care for people. He showed me I could be the same kind of person to others. It’s not rocket science.

More than this, Ken made my life better by giving me a picture of who Jesus is. Blowing the snow off my driveway is something Jesus would have done. He washed the feet of the twelve apostles at the last supper. He would have cleared my driveway of snow, too.

I bet you can remember people in your life who have made it better. I’ll give you some examples that I will also have listed in the show notes.

Remember the people in your life who…
  • gave you money when you really needed it
  • took the blame for something you did, either as a child or an adult
  • believed in you when others didn’t, or when you didn’t believe in yourself
  • loved you even when you were unlovable
  • taught you how to read. Imagine life today if you didn’t know how to read
  • let you off the hook for something you did
  • forgave you
  • gave you a job when others would not hire you
  • was silent when they had every right to chew you out for something you did
  • was a role model for you
  • told you tough things you needed to hear
  • took your side, when everyone else was against you
  • listened to you
  • set their needs aside to meet your needs
  • loved you unconditionally
  • let you win an argument, even though they were right and you were wrong
  • Brought out the best in you
  • chose not to believe the gossip they heard about you
  • asked for your help
  • gave you hope when you had none yourself
  • invited you to dream
  • wanted to hear about your kids and grandkids
  • rejoiced with you in the things you were rejoicing about
  • mourned with you when you were mourning
  • let you talk on and on, without ever shifting the spotlight of the conversation onto them
  • sat in the crowded back seat of the car so you could sit upfront

Well, that’s my list of people to remember. I can think of someone in each of these categories. How about you? I’d like to hear from you about any I’ve missed that have made a positive difference in your life.

So what does all this mean for YOU?

It is so easy to forget the people who have made our life better.

It takes practice to remember them and there’s no better time to practice than this time around Memorial Day when we remember those who have made a positive impact on our life.

In taking time to pause and remember the blessings of our relationships, we acknowledge God’s love for us by sending just the right people, at just the right time, to do just the right thing that we needed.

Here’s the main takeaway I hope you remember from today’s episode

Remembering the people who made our life better causes us to reflect upon the goodness of God who blessed us with these relationships. It reminds us we can make life better for someone else – even in very small ways – just as others have done for us.

I’d love to hear any thoughts you have about today’s episode.


In closing, I hope your thinking was stimulated by today’s show, enough to reflect upon the people who made a positive impact on your life.

For when you do, it will help you experience the joy of relationships God intends for you. Because after all, You Were Made for This.

Well, that’s it for today. Please consider telling others about this podcast if you think it would be interesting and helpful to them. And don’t forget to spark a little joy for the people you meet this week. Spread some relational sunshine around. And I’ll see you next time.

Related episodes you may want to listen to

139: Why Should I Listen to This Podcast?
002: The Gift of a Background Relationship

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