It's easy to forget.
Well, some things.
Trauma, scars, wounds, self-doubt, guilt. These we are constantly being reminded of. Things that keep us away from Truth and Peace and Joy. These we can easily recall at any time. Negative things that would pull us down and keep us under. Oh yes, these I remember often and with vivid colors.
There are other things that I remember can re-call. I think my most vivid memories I have made have been in Japan, mainly because I am always aware of the uncertainty of life here. Will I be here next year? How many more times will I be able to meet these people? Will this be the last chance I have? There are so many things out of my control, so I actively archive and treasure memories. When I feel uncertain, or I hear the lies of self-hatred whispering in my ear, I remember.
I think of Israel. It's really shocking how forgetful they were. Or I used to think so. I mean, really! They saw really BIG powerful miracles and acts of God. And the first time they hit a snag, they complain, and here comes selective memory. "Ah, how wonderful it was back when we were in Egypt. We had food and we ate our fill everyday." (conveniently forgetting how much they complained of their slavery at the time.)
But God, ever so aware of our faulty memories, kept giving them new things to remember.
How blessed we are.
Today I was able to talk with an old friend for the first time in years. She reminded me of so many things we used to do and be when we were younger. So much I have forgotten. So much I have lost. But she remembered for me. And reminded me. And we rejoiced in the remembering.
I often struggle with self-worth. It's a daily ritual for me lately to make myself remember why I am OK. And most of my remembering is done through the affirmations of those I care about.
I am daily amazed when people accept me instead of merely put up with me. It honestly shocks me when people desire to spend time with me. I am baffled when people desire my presence, not just occasionally, but they want me to live near them and be in community with them.
Well, I never said I didn't have self-worth issues.
But that's not really the point.
I think there are all things that we forget. Important things. Things that when we remember change our whole view of the world and life. These things are different for different people, but we all have them.
Or the things we remember, like in the back of our minds, but don't recall. They are just sitting there, dusty and forlorn.
And I can see how this is what the Enemy wants. Us distracted, forgetful of the things that would bring us Life. Anything to keep us discontent, distrustful or rebellious.
No wonder God reminds us so often to Remember.
Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the door-frames of your houses and on your gates.
There are so many things that should be forgotten. Hate, fear, rejection, things that distract us from Life. But oh so many more things that should be Remembered. Love, friendship, rest, rejoicing, small remnants of Eden still left for us, to Remind us that all is not lost. In the midst of an imperfect world, we are called to Remember.
Today I am thankful for those who Remember and Remind, and share with me the joys of Remembrance.
And somehow Heaven feels just a little more tangible tonight.