10 questions that reveal surprising memories. Ask away.


My father grew up on a farm. During annual harvests, he was often promised a bicycle for his hard work. But season after season that bike never showed up. Then one day he came home to a shiny bicycle sitting in front of his father’s county store. His brand new bike had finally arrived.

Now, you have to hear his excitement when he tells this story. He’s 10 years old all over again.

“Oh man, it sure was nice! It had everything – chrome AND tassels!”

This story sticks out for me in the context of his life. His mother died when he was 9 years old. I’m amazed that this happy story managed to stay so prominent during that time. This story reminds me of what I admire about my father. He has an inspiring ability to quickly forgive the pains of life and return to joy and peace.

I’m glad I know this story. But it took me asking a question to uncover it. Oddly, it just never came up over the years. Now it’s a memory neither of us will ever forget.

10 questions that reveal surprising memories

Here are 10 questions that may uncover new stories about the lives of those you love. We all yearn to be known better and more deeply. Taking time to ask questions can be a service project on its own. And there is always more to learn even about the people we think we know best.

  1. What was the best gift you ever received?
  2. As a kid, what was an average weekend like in your family?
  3. Who is the first friend you can remember making?
  4. What things do you remember about your first love?
  5. If you could relive one year of your life which year would it be?
  6. Have you ever cried tears of joy?
  7. Who was the teacher that had the most impact on your life?
  8. Have you ever witnessed a life beginning?
  9. Have you ever witnessed a life ending?
  10. Have you ever witnessed a miracle?

What are some others?


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