Today I forgot to get one of our daughters whilst at the shops. She was arriving off the train, and instead of waiting, I headed home, and it wasn't until I was around the corner from home that I realized, "Oops, where is Tellie?" (I guess it's been one of those weeks)
I was very apologetic on returning to pick her up, as she was not impressed with my absent-mindedness, but it did remind me that even though we can forget, God doesn't ever forget us or anything about us.
Knowing how forgetful we can be, I think, is one of the reasons He encouraged everyone in His word to make memorials. It's why it's good to remember and testify of all that he has done and continues to do in our life so that amid our busy lives and forgetful moments, we don't forget Him.
One of our other daughter's stories is where I first started to learn this. When I look at her skin and how healthy it is now, I am reminded of how her little arms used to be; bandaged most days from wrist to elbow, protecting and hoping to bring healing to the angry weeping sores underneath the bandages caused by chronic eczema.
At the worst times, we struggled to find a clear spot on her body as we went back and forth to specialists and hospital appointments, all the time believing and praying for a breakthrough. I would say, "One day, people are going to say to you what beautiful skin you have, so just keep praying and seeing yourself like that".
Nowadays, her skin is like a "living memorial" to what God has done, and people comment on her lovely skin.
The meaning of the Hebrew word used in scripture for a memorial is "to remember".
At the foot of Mt. Sinai, Moses built an altar of stones – a memorial to commemorate God's covenant with Israel (Ex. 12:14). Moses spoke to Israel just before they entered the promised land. He said, "Be careful that you do not forget the LORD, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery." (Deuteronomy. 6:12) God didn't want His people to forget Him and all He had done for them.
Joshua also erected a memorial of 12 stones when he finally crossed the Jordan River with the Israelites. He instructed the leaders of the tribes to "Choose twelve men from among the people, one from each tribe, and tell them to take up twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan from right where the priests stood and to carry them over with you and put them down at the place where you stay tonight."
The memorial stones were a reminder of each person's breakthrough experience as they came into the land God had promised. The stones were there every time they looked or passed that way to cause them to remember to tell their story and to keep a clear memory of what God had done for them.
Those memorial stones in the Bible were also to serve as a basis for sharing faith, to remind them to share their God stories with their children. They were to be a signpost to a lost world "that all the peoples of the earth may know the hand of the Lord, that it is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever."
God knows how we think and that we can easily forget important things. So He asks us to remember and sit down and think about the memories, the experiences, and breakthroughs, and thank God as we make the most of every opportunity to tell others that He is the living God who "parts the waters" and makes a way through.
What are your memorials?
Take a moment "to remember" all that God has done. Remember next time when you take a bold step of faith into the unknown, of all the times through the accounts in His word and the memorials in your own life and how He is faithful to get you to the "other side".
"He has caused his wonders to be remembered; the LORD is gracious and compassionate." (Psalm 111:4)
Prayer: please help me not forget all you have done for me. I will have memorials of your goodness, love, and faithfulness. I give you thanks. In Jesus' name, amen.