It’s insane how easily and often we forget. Literally.
Something in Adam’s legacy smears our grip with amnesiac vaseline. We think we’ll hold on to this little drama of YHWH’s provision, this answered prayer, this jaw-dropping intervention. We cannot imagine that the rest of our life will not be colored by this miracle, shaped by this insight. We know we’ll remember.
Then we don’t.
And when the Lord your God brings you into the land that he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give you—with great and good cities that you did not build, and houses full of all good things that you did not fill, and cisterns that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive trees that you did not plant—and when you eat and are full, then take care lest you forget the Lord, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. (Deuteronomy 6:10–12 ESV)
Remembering YHWH’s provision requires rehearsal, persistent discipline, daily workouts at the crack of dawn. Moses exhorts the Israelites who shuffle just outside the frontier of their promised land that forgetting on a full belly will come naturally.
Take care, he warns them, otherwise you’ll forget.
Biblical faith does not frown on the constant practice that remembering requires if it is to flourish among us. Call it ritual, call it liturgy, call it recitation, call it memorization. Without it, no earnestly spontaneous faith will do.
You’ll forget. Guaranteed.
Draw your line in the sand. Stake your claim. Write it down and then sign it with your own determined hand. Carve it with a knife on your doorposts. Tape it to your fridge.
Do something to make sure you remember.
Otherwise, you’ll be fat, warm, and dry on a cold, rainy night. Then you’ll forget.