Our memories are odd things. Have you noticed how it is easier for you to remember some things than others? As you review your past , has it been selectively colored by the memories you’ve chosen over the ones you’ve ignored? Perhaps you’ve chosen to remember only the happy times, forgetting there were times of sorrow that also shaped you. Or maybe your past memory is so shadowed by a series of unfortunate events, you’ve quite forgotten the seasons of happiness you enjoyed. You may not be aware of it but your interpretation of today’s events are shaping your memories as they occur. The filter through which we sift our daily events and emotions shapes the way we will remember today and also affecting the way we step out into tomorrow.
We are reading a psalms devotional by Matthew Jacoby, founding member of the Aussie band Sons of Korah. The reading from Psalm 116:1-4 starts “I love The Lord because he has heard my appeal for mercy.” The psalmist talks about “the ropes of death” being wrapped around him and of being eventually freed from their torments. Jacoby’s message reminds me of the importance of remembering to be thankful even in the midst of pain. He writes:
“Beginning your time of prayer with thanksgiving will change your prayer life radically. Remember the prayers that God has answered in the past. Remember the times when you trusted God for a certain matter and God demonstrated His faithfulness in a way beyond what you had hoped. Remember the times when you were overcome by trouble and sorrow and God lifted you up. Meditate on these things, praise God for all these times and give heartfelt thanks to him. This will create a spring of faith and zeal within you from which prayer will naturally flow like a river.” M. Jacoby
‘Remembering’ has power to shine the light of hope into our dark sorrows. It draws us closer to God at the precise moment we feel distanced from him. Remembering his faithfulness and compassion that are renewed every morning fuels our faith. It pours balm on our wounds and lifts our eyes to see his glory again. Remembering God’s goodness and perfect plan may not free our bodies from the present prison today, but it frees our spirit to rejoice in the great hope we desperately need to find and maintain until the shackles are finally released.
May you be blessed today in remembering who God is, how He loves you, all He’s done, and His promises yet to be revealed in your life.