My family makes fun of me for not remembering things from when I was in high school. I played football in high school, maybe I took too many hits to the head. But maybe I just do not want to remember. Maybe, for whatever reason, I have subconsciously decided to forget that part of my life.
I enjoy my life right now. I love my wife and kids and do not get me started on my new grandson. I love my church, the church that I serve. I enjoy going to worship with them and I love leading them. It would be hard to imagine that I would selectively forget anything going on right now.
One of my favorite phrases found in the New Testament is, “But God.” I love this phrase because it then speaks about the way that God loves us and what He has done to save us. Romans 5:8, “BUT GOD demonstrates His love for us that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” It speaks often about who we are now. We are saved. We are born again. We are made new.
I like this phrase though it seems to always follow a passage that describes what we were like before Christ. I was reading yesterday and wondered, why would God spend so much time reminding us who we were? Why do we need to remember how far from God we were before he drew us to himself? Maybe, because He knew that we would selectively forget that part of our lives… selective amnesia.
We do not want to remember the sinful parts of our lives. We do not want remember the worst about ourselves. We always want to broadcast the good things about us. That is why social media is not a good way to get to know people. You see the good parts, the parts they want us to see. Maybe that is the problem. We remember the parts of our lives that we want to be remembered for. We hope others will see and remember our good parts and ignore or forget the bad. I guess we are a lot like that with God also. We hope that God will be so in love with our “good things” and somehow miss all the sin we have committed.
But over and over through scripture, we see God reminding us of who we were. Titus 3:3 says; “For we too were once foolish, disobedient, deceived, enslaved by various passions and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, detesting one another.” Said simply, we were terrible people. The good things did not even come close to making up for the foolish, hateful things that we have done. “BUT GOD!”
Titus 3:4-5 says; “But when the kindness of God our Savior and his love for mankind appeared, 5 he saved us—not by works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy—through the washing of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit.” God saved us! Through noting of our own doing. Not because of how great we are, but because of his mercy and his great love.
See God reminds us where we were so that we appreciate where we are, or better yet who we are. Because we were children of wrath and now are heirs to the king. We are not spoiled rich kids that have it made. We have been made new through the blood of Christ. We understand the transformation that has taken place in us, but how great that transformation has been. Praise be to God.
So as you read about the wonderful things God has done for us, allow God to remind you of where you were. Then praise Him for where you are.