Being forgetful is not something we pride ourselves on. In fact we do everything we can to remember things. We take pictures, capture videos, journal, and record every special moment possible. Since the beginning of time people have sat around campfires telling stories and handing them down from one generation to the next. Yet, we do forget! I forget what I walked in the room to retrieve, 60 seconds after I set out to find it. I make lists and forget to take them with me. I open a text and forget to respond to it.
However in this fast paced world that only seems to be getting faster I am trying to carve out a focus on the important things in life. I realize that I need to pick and choose what to remember and what to let go of.
I want to forget how I felt when someone wronged me. I want to remember the way Ava’s hair smells. I want to forget feelings of inferiority that creep in from time to time. I want to remember my Papa’s whistle. I want to forget how to feel anxious and fearful. I want to remember the way my children laugh when they are all together. All of them piled up in one corner of a room sharing, laughing, teasing, caring.
Not many people know the unique experience one has loving someone with brain cancer. We all have unique experiences based on what life has brought to us. For our family, not only did we experience all the things that come with cancer and cancer treatment, both conventional and alternative. But, we also experienced the things that come with dementia. Previous to watching my sweet husband with this, I also watched my dear Papa go through Alzheimers. He was the closest thing to a father I have ever known. Like Alan, he was big and strong and oh so capable. When the tables are turned and the strong one becomes the one you take care of it does a number on your head and heart. You begin to think more about the thing we take for granted every day called “remembering”. We realize what a gift it is, the memory and the experience that created the memory. So when I read this verse today, the Spirit stopped me.
“But be sure you live out the message (implanted within you, ) and do not merely listen to it and
so deceive yourselves. For if someone merely listens to the message and does not live it out, he is like someone who gazes at his own face in a mirror. For he gazes at himself and then goes out and immediately forgets what sort of person he was. But the one who peers into the perfect law of liberty and fixes his attention there, does not become a forgetful listener but one who lives it out- he will be blessed in what he does.” James 1:22-25
I have a list of things I hope I never forget dear ones! Oh so many, but chief among them is what sort of person I am. This, I will only know by staring into the perfect law of liberty and fixing my attention there.
The world will try to tell you who you are. It will try to define you by what you do, what you look like, where you live or what you drive. It has it’s own ruler to measure success and worthiness. But, our God, the Creator who fashioned you with his own hands. The one who knew you while you were being formed in your mother’s womb knows you! Let Him be the one who tells you who you are! Take a moment every day to gaze into his perfect law of liberty and fix your attention there. Let him tell you who you are and then live it out. I promise it’s the best investment you will ever make! When we invest our time in letting the Lord speak His truth over us, we “remember” who we are. Because His Spirit has implanted that truth into our hearts, as we read it and gaze upon it, the testimony between His Spirit and ours is like a sweet conversation. It is as if we are saying….” Oh yes, now I remember! This is who I am. It is who you created me to be.”
Then, the same Spirit who reminded us is the one who empowers us to live it out! May we choose wisely what to forget and what to remember.