As a young pastor, I went to see a long-time parishioner. She lived in a nursing facility in a “memory-care unit” At that time, I do not recall having any experience with people suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s. This lady was sitting by herself in a chair, staring off into the distance. In my ignorant exuberance, I asked her, “do you know who I am?” She looked at me, intently and said, “I know who you are.” “You are a blankety-blank bill-collector!” I reached into my coat pocket and pulled out a little notebook and wrote a note to myself: “Pastor, never again ask anyone in a memory-care unit if they know you. They, in fact, may very well tell you who you are!
Granted the above story is a bit extreme. Yet it does seem to be a part of the human experience to forget things, even important items. Oftentimes, as Christ-followers our greatest need is not to receive new information as much as it is to be reminded of what we already know. The Psalmist reminds us to “forget not His benefits.”
As we prepare for Thanksgiving this week join me in a Thanksgiving exercise of remembrance:
- How great is His love for you!
- How much God has done for you down through the years and right now!
- Thank Him for breath.
- Thank Him for life.
- Thank Him for your family.
- Thank Him for your friends.
- Thank Him for health.
- Thank Him for being an ever-present reality.
- Thank Him for safely bring you through trials and dangers.
- Thank Him for redemption.
- Thank Him for the gift of eternal life.
- Thank Him for the “peace that passes understanding.”
- Thank Him for the peace that only He can bring.
At times it easy to forget all that God has done for us. It is often much easier to look at our lack instead of counting our blessings. Problems seem to outshine the good things we have received from the Hand of the Lord. As the psalmist has said:
“It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High, proclaiming your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night” (Psalm 92:1-2). It is always the appropriate time to proclaim God’s love and faithfulness. As we pause to celebrate Thanksgiving this year, let’s take time to tell of His love and to remember His faithfulness. Even in this most unusual year, the fact remains God has been faithful. A sense of gratitude is one of the keys to living by faith. Even though we celebrate Thanksgiving day in November, every day is a day of thanksgiving for the believer!
Happy Thanksgiving have a great and blessed day!
2 Thoughts to “The Problem of forgetting”
Thanks, Dr. Blake. I think there is much merit in being reminded of what we already know. We can forget in the face of struggles that plant themselves right in front of us. If we but recall that God took care of us when…and also that time….then we are more inclined to feel the comfort that He will take care of us again.
Thanks, Dr. Blake, with so many challenges demanding our attention we miss many an opportunity to pause and give thanks.