Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me.
Psalm 103:1-2 (NLT)
As I read those verses this morning, I found myself reflecting on what I like to refer to as "God's Photo Album".
From the time I was a child, I was taught that it was important to not only experience but remember the things that God has done. In fact, this was something that God commanded His people to do, over and over again. On more than one occasion God would tell his people to erect some sort of memorial, not only so they would remember what he had done but also so that the story might be passed on down from one generation to the next. We must not only hide God's Word in our hearts, we must also hide our own stories or "pictures" of what God has done in our own lives.
Oh how I love to get out those "pictures" of me and God! There are far too many to count! I see him standing next to the oxygen tent I was in when I was three months old and was hospitalized due to pneumonia. No one thought I was going to make it but God said I would. He took me in his arms and he healed me.
Then there is a picture of God opening the door when I managed to lock myself and my friend Denise in the closet when we were about four or five years old. I had managed to shut and latch the door by slipping a wire hanger under the bottom of the door and use it as a hook. My plan worked but... the door did not open. It was cramped, dark and hot in there. My chest hurt, I could barely cry out and there was a strange roaring noise in my ears. God heard my whispered cry and he opened the door. That's what I told my mother when we came downstairs a few minutes later, as white as sheets. I told her I said, "Jesus, please help us!" and that's exactly what he did.
There are so many pictures! There are pictures of God holding me in his arms when I was born again. There are pictures of him walking with me at school when I was lonely and afraid. There are pictures of God introducing me to some of his friends and helping me with every day problems. There are pictures of God healing me. There are pictures of God providing for me. There are pictures of God surprising me with something wonderful but there are also other types of pictures.
There is a lovely picture of God crying with me on the day my dad passed away and telling me not to be afraid. Though I no longer had an earthly father, I was not "fatherless" or alone in this dark and dangerous world. Another picture is of me and God on the day I learned about my tumor. I thought at first that I was all alone but immediately I discovered I was not. God was there.
Do not forget! Oh, do NOT forget what God has done! Share the "pictures", share the stories! Do not merely hide them in your heart but take them out and even share them over and over and over again. Our stories which in actuality are a part of God's story, are our witness, our testimony as to who God is and what he has done, is doing and continues to do. Our stories are powerful weapons against the enemy. They affirm the validity of God's Word, destorying the seeds of doubt which the enemy seeks to plant.
May we never forget.
Scripture quotation from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.