Last night at an Ash Wednesday service the pastor said as he crossed my forehead with ash — “Remember, from dust you came and from dust you still return.”
The remember struck me because for some reason the idea of remembering who God is and what he has done has been on my mind lately. Several weeks ago I was doing a study on waiting on God and the verses in Lamentations 3 stayed with me —
He has made my teeth grind on gravel, and made me cower in ashes;
my soul is bereft of peace; I have forgotten what happiness is;
so I say, “My endurance has perished;
so has my hope from the Lord.” Remember my affliction and my wanderings, the wormwood and the gall! My soul continually remembers it
and is bowed down within me.
But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”
Jeremiah’s lament is so real and so low and yet when he remembers what the Lord has done his response is the opposite.
I usually don’t do anything for the Lenten season, but I have decided to incorporate the idea of remembering in to a 40 day discipline, specifically remembering God’s character and what God has done for me. It is timely for me as Tim and I are about to embark on a move that brings uncertainty, risk, and and a degree of plain old fear.
So, all of that to say that for the next 40 days I want to do something fairly simple — I want to remember God and what he has done — 40 tangible ways that he has showed up and been with me in details and in the big picture of my life. I want to remember in such a way that I might look ahead equipped with truth and assurance.