the story room

Saturday, January 07, 2006


I've found myself thinking about the discipline of remembering lately. As I look to a future with a lot of changes happening soon, I've been working hard to remember that my Father has dealt with me in goodness, faithfulness, mercy, and love. I can't see into the future, but like the ancient Israelites, I am called to look back and remember where I've come from, trusting that the God who has led me this far will not abandon me now, but will stay just as close - leading me in love, teaching me his ways, and using me to bring the love, peace, and grace of his kingdom to the world.

I recently read a sermon preached by Frederick Buechner called "A Room Called Remember" (in a book by that same title). The whole sermon struck me, especially this:

"To remember my life is to remember countless times when I might have given up, gone under, when humanly speaking I might have gotten lost beyond the power of any to find me. But I didn't. And each of you, with all the memories you have and the tales you could tell, you also have not given up. You are also survivors and are here. And what does that tell us? It tells us that weak as we are, a strength beyond our strength has pulled us through at least this far, at least to this day. Foolish as we are, a wisdom beyond our wisdom has flickered up just often enough to light us if not to the right path through the forest, at least to a path that leads forward, that is bearable. Faint of heart as we are, a love beyond our power to love has kept our hearts alive. . . .

" . . . 'Remember the wonderful works that he has done,' goes David's song - remember what he has done in the lives of each of us, and beyond that remember what he has done in the life of the world; remember above all what he has done in Christ - remember those moments in our own lives when with only the dullest understanding but with the sharpest longing we have glimpsed that Christ's kind of life is the only life that matters and that all other kinds of life are riddled with death; remember those moments in our lives when Christ came to us in countless disguises through people who one way or another strengthened us, comforted us, healed us, judged us, by the power of Christ alive within them. All that is the past. All that is what there is to remember. And because that is the past, because we remember, we have this high and holy hope: that what he has done, he will continue to do, that what he has begun in us and our world, he will in unimaginable ways bring to fullness and fruition."

Thank you, our Father, for your goodness, bringing us this far. As we remember the ways you've been near us and blessed us until today, please give us the courage and faith to trust you with our futures. Thank you for your faithfulness.


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