Remembering is Good

(An earlier version of this blog post by Janet Mendenhall was published on May 27, 2014.)

Remembering is important. Monday, we will celebrate Memorial Day. We will salute fallen soldiers, recount battles won and lost, fly flags and decorate graves. We will extol the special things that made each lost life memorable. We will remember.

God certainly knows the importance of remembering, urging His people throughout history to recount His countless acts of faithfulness to an unfaithful people through speeches, feasts and festivals. Jesus asked us to remember his life and the way he wants us to live whenever we feast together in community.

God knows when we forget, we lose focus. Erasing earlier footprints impedes our progress. Ignoring our past hinders our future. But looking back sharpens our vision for what is ahead.

And so it is good to remember.

After about 15 years, Connecting Caring Communities has a start toward a pocketful of memories. We remember those who saw the disenfranchised and the marginal and heard God’s call to really see them as those made in his image, each bringing gifts to the table and who chose to engage them in this business of reconciliation and renewal and dreamed of such a ministry. We remember early leaders and employees of the ministry who paved the way for its current direction. We remember neighbors who touched our hearts and then touched their neighbors and then began to transform their neighborhoods. We remember board members past and present who caught the vision and joined hearts with us to change lives. We remember prayer warriors and donors who have sustained us.

We remember God and his vision for us: a world where we love him with no holds barred and our neighbors as ourselves. We raise our Ebenezer and declare as the prophet Samuel did, “Thus far has the Lord helped us.” We remember and we are thankful. We look back to find the strength and hope and joy to look forward to create more memories.

Remembering is important.