Lest We Forget

Lest We Forget

Thursday, 30 March 2017  | Narelle - MECS Principal
How good are you at remembering? So much of our lives seems to rely on the act of remembering. Much of our educational endeavour is based on it. Our justice system relies on it. We are told to remember the past so as to not repeat it. Much of our daily lives requires us to remember what we have to do and where we have to be!

The ability to remember seems to form our very identity and worth in a society that has little place for forgetfulness. I was reminded of this last year when reading the book, ‘Still Alice’. Some of you may have seen the film!  It tells the story of a brilliant professor who is diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s; as she loses her memory she loses her identity. We see how quickly she is ‘put aside’ as her inability to remember impacts her working and family life.

In contrast to our humanness, God always remembers. He remembers His covenant (Genesis 9:15, Exodus 6:5, Lev 26:45) and His promises. Faithfulness is not something God aspires to; it is an essential part of His character. When God makes a promise, He always remembers and therefore keeps it. God always remembers His people, (Genesis 30:22) and He repeatedly commands them to never forget Him. Remembering always involves action. And as God remembers, He rescues and redeems.

So when reading Exodus, I find my frustration rises when I repeatedly encounter the Israelites forgetfulness of God’s sovereignty and power. How can they so quickly forget the remarkable acts of the Lord their God that rescues them from slavery? How can they so quickly turn their eyes and focus worship towards a golden calf after all that God has done? And then in the New Testament, the same things happens; human beings tend to forget quickly! And then begrudgingly I realise I am no different. Despite God’s faithfulness to me in my own life, I have the propensity to forget His goodness to me.

God, the designer of our minds, has taken into account the fallibility of human memory and our fallen nature. When we join together with others in praise and worship on a Sunday, we are being reminded of the joy, peace and purpose we receive through the saving work of Jesus. This is active remembrance. If we don’t purposefully take this time, our week can blur into the next. In addition, God provides us with tangible reminders of His Lordship over our lives, none more so than through His Son Jesus. Christ’s death and resurrection is the ultimate reminder that God remembers His promises and has provided a way for all of our creation to be reconciled once again to God. The act of communion or the Lord’s Supper is designed so that we don’t forget what Christ has done on the Cross. And if all this isn’t enough God seals it with His presence through the power of His Spirit. ‘But the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you’ (John 14:26).

And so, as a Christian community we have the responsibility to perpetuate remembrance of the one we serve. We are the body of Christ who can speak of God’s tangible presence. In the weeks leading up to Easter, let us remember God in our lives and in our worship, trusting in the sure knowledge that He will remember His great promises and bring us to a full understanding of His word and His will. Let us also bring this good news to all in our MECS community and to all we share life with.

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