"Our fingerprints never fade from the lives we touch."
-the 2010 film Remember Me
Often times at the end of a long family car trip, after the car has been unpacked and cleaned out, I will marvel at how dirty and disgusting the back windows are in our minivan. It literally looks as if my children have covered their fingers with grease and rubbed them all over the windows. They like to draw pictures in the fog that will sometimes build up, and the residue that is left after everything dries up, and the trip is over, is gross. The fingerprints they leave are grimy, slimy and just plain nasty.
As I reflect on Mother's Day, and the fingerprints that my own mother, and other women who have played significant roles in my life over the years, have left on the fabric of who I am, I'm grateful. Too often in this world, as we interact with people, the fingerprints that are left upon us are like those on the windows of my minivan...grimy and nasty. People's hurtful words, their sarcasm and jealousy, their outright indifference or attempts at putting us down, they all leave fingerprints on our lives that never fade, and impact us deeply. But at times, we encounter people who leave fingerprints of grace and love, of compassion and kindness. Fingerprints that build us up, rejoice with us, help us to overcome. Today I'm grateful for my Mom who has left, and continues to leave, those positive kinds of fingerprints on my life (and on the lives of my wife and children), as well as for the other women along my life's journey that have done the same.
In today's lectionay text from the Gospel of John, Jesus tells his followers that we are to "love each other" as he has loved us, just as the Father has loved him. To me the implication is this: God has left His fingerprints of love on Christ; Christ in turn has left his fingerprints of love on his followers; and now he calls us to go out and leave those exact same fingerprints of love on those that we come into contact with each and ever day. In our familes, in our workplaces, in our schools, amongst complete strangers. We are called to leave fingerprints of love.
Whether you realize it or not, today, you will leave fingerprints. Each person you interact with today will be covered in your fingerprints. What will those fingerprints be? What will be their lasting impact?
Our fingerprints never fade from the lives we touch.