On the eve of entering the Promised Land, Moses exhorted the Hebrews to remember. Over and over, he told them to pay attention to what God had done for them: how he had delivered them from slavery in Egypt, protected them in the wilderness, and provided for them throughout their forty year journey. For Moses, this exhortation wasn’t meant to stir nostalgia among the people; rather he wanted them to remember their past so that they would make good decisions in the future.
When we remember our experiences of God, we relive those moments. We allow the grace and power of those moments to strengthen us and revitalize us. We allow them to build up our faith and reinforce the knowledge that we can trust in God.
Our experiences with God can also help us to stand firm during those times when God seems distant. During times of aridity or when we’re struggling with temptation, we can lean on our memories of God’s faithfulness and our knowledge that he will never desert us. We can recall the times when we have experienced his mercy and felt his healing strength. Over time, our memories help to transform us and build us up.
Like the Hebrews facing new challenges in the Promised Land, our memories of God’s work in our lives can help guide us to make sound decisions. By looking at past situations in which we experienced God’s help, we can find answers that incorporate God’s grace into our human reasoning.
Each and every time God works in us, he does far more than rescue us from a difficult situation or give us his comfort. He also gives us another glimpse into who he is. He reveals his faithfulness, his mercy, his power, and his glory. It is these truths that God wants to become the foundation for our lives.