Building a Memory

It has been said that one of the deep overriding themes of the Old Testament is memory.  Again and again the Words of scripture prompt us to remember.  “Remember the things I have done in the past. For I alone am God! I am God, and there is none like me” (Isaiah 46:9). We must remember who we are and whose we are.  We need to know that we are a people set free, a people who were once slaves.  We could summarize the Old Testament: Remember.

Without memory we are lost, we no longer have the continuity of community, we are totally isolated.  Memory is one of the links that makes living together possible.
Even the New Testament has serious overtones of the function of memory in faith. Jesus tells us that when we celebrate the supper, we should do it in remembrance of him (1 Corinthians 11:24-25).  In remembering Christ, we remember ourselves.  We know who we are in the middle of our relationship with him.
I will never forget the day that my Papaw Worthy forgot who I was.  He had spent several years in a nursing home in Mt. Pleasant, TX.  I would visit some, though never enough.  One day, near the end of his life I went into his room and saw fear and not recognition in his eyes.  He did not know me, and I could not convince him that he did know me.  I did not go back many times after that, for the visit left me and him shaking —he from fear, me from loss.
The loss of his memory severed our living relationship.  While I still had my memories, we could not share them together.  We became isolated from each other.  This is the way of life.  If we do not remember, we abandon all hope of a real relationship.
Spend a few moments and remember.  Remember the beginning of faith, remember a time when you felt cherished, remember the sin from which you have been cleansed.  Share your story with someone.


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