At present, we see indistinctly, as in a mirror, but then face to face.

(1 Corinthians 13:12) New American Bible translation

Memories of loved ones come in many shapes and sizes, but through a rearview mirror, really? Really!

About twenty years ago, I was ministering in Columbus, OH. As such, I would travel back and forth most weekends to connect with my family and Ursuline sisters. On one occasion after experiencing an especially joy-filled visit with my mom and dad, I recall us making our way down the elevator to their white front door.

It was a beautiful, autumn day. Colorful flowers graced the entranceway, and the sunlight brightened everything it touched. My parents walked me to the car, and we exchanged our loving good-byes. Waving back and forth to each other, I drove slowly toward the street.

At the end of the driveway, preparing to make my left-hand turn, I looked at the white door in my rearview mirror. My parents bathed in light and surrounded by beauty were still waving, wearing smiles that brought me to tears. With a final wave from my window, I held the image in my sight, not knowing that was the last time I would see them together on this side of eternity.

Through the sudden sickness and death that was to follow, I often filled my heart with that simple rearview mirror reflection. In it I discovered a memory that both aided my subsequent grief, and directed my hope of the face-to-face glory yet to come.

Sister Joanne Buckman