Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them fade from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them. Deuteronomy 4:9 NIV
Moses, the leader of God’s people and statesman of the Hebrews, wanted to ensure that all God’s chosen people, young and old alike, remembered all that God had done to and for them. Consequently, he urged parents to educate their children in the knowledge and activities of God. By doing so, parents would have the opportunity to recall God’s faithfulness while conveying the narratives of God’s goodness from one generation to the next.
God’s activities on behalf the Hebrews formed the groundwork of their religion, the base of the covenant relationship and the covenant legislation. These activities also served to distinguish the Hebrews and their religion from their neighbours. They would understand and appreciate that the God who had done all these things was also the God who demanded and deserved their allegiance, obedience, and commitment.
However, this plea to “watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget” comes against the background of the human tendency to forget. We are prone to forgetfulness, and that’s not because of Alzheimer’s. Some persons are guilty of forgetting where they came from and what God has done in their lives; some forget the rivers they have crossed, the battles fought, and the compassion and amazing grace of God with which they have been blessed. When we forget, there is the likelihood of becoming puffed up with pride and being deluded into believing we have accomplished all these things on our own.
Every believer can say with Donnie McClurkin, “We’ve come this far by faith/ Leaning on the Lord/ Trusting in His holy word/ He never failed me yet”; and it is highly recommended that we remember, reflect on, and reveal what the Lord has done in our lives. We must develop the habit of telling our church, co-workers, children, classmates, and family members, about the wonderful deeds of God. Remembering and advertising God’s actions will strengthen our faith and brighten our path. We will grow in confidence in God.
I agree with Dottie Rambo who wrote:
Roll back the curtain of memory now and then,
show me where you brought me from
and where I could have been,
oh remember I’m human and humans forget,
so remind me remind me dear Lord.
I appeal to you today: Do not forget what God has done in your life, and tell others about it.
Thought: Memory is one of God’s greatest gifts to humans. Prayer: Lord, help me to use my memory to retain good things and not evil things and evil thoughts. For Christ’s sake. Amen.