5/27/24 MondayMatters: Living With Memories

5/27/24 MondayMatters: Living With Memories


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Memories are a wonderful gift from God, but if we allow them to, they can defeat and destroy us. Studies show that we actually only remember about 15-20% of the things that we think we do. And those memories are not 100% accurate. Here are some important keys to living with our memories.

  1. Our memories do not determine who we are. We are not defined by our memories. The most used tool of the enemy of our souls is shame. Revelation 12 says, “He is the accuser and he accuses us day and night.” And what does he use to accuse us, to shame us? Our memories. But what we remember about our past does not dictate our present or our future.
  2. We can choose what we remember. Just as we can “take every thought captive,” we can control our memories. We can refuse to let the accuser control where we live in our memories. Memories are episodic, the events that we lived through or experienced, and semantic, knowledge like algebra and world history. Both kinds of memories fade without use. Paul says, “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” (Phillipians 4:8) In other words, I can decide what I think about and what I remember.
  3. We can reframe our memories. Just as when we get older, we “remember” things differently, we can choose to reinterpret, reimagine, reframe our memories. We look back and see how God was present. We think back and remember that He worked things out for good. So Joseph says to his brothers in Genesis 50, “I remember this differently. You remember that you were trying to harm me. I remember that God was working everything out for my good and the good of my people.”
  4. Finally, memories are a gift from God. Those wonderful, cherished, treasured memories remind us of His goodness to us, His faithfulness for us, and His work in us. We remember and we praise Him. Memory enhances our worship. That’s why an old hymn stirs us so. We remember how God was present the first time we heard that song. And we retell those memories to our children and our children’s children to teach them about the goodness of God. So when they ask.”What do these stones mean?” we can remember with them the times God delivered us and brought us into the Promised Land.

Learn to master your memories and quit letting your memories master you.

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