Recently, it dawned on me that I’m next in line to be the keeper of family memories.
I’ve never had to keep the memories before. Sure, I knew them—and even helped with a family genealogical book, but most of the people—albeit my relatives, were strangers to me. My family was the only ones I had built memories with. Those memories I didn’t have to worry about forgetting because I had patriarchs and matriarchs to help me recall. Then one by one they began dying. My father followed suit.
Now only my mother remains. When she’s gone, I’m next in line. Since her memory is fading, I try to ask her everything I might want to know about the family. Hopefully, someone in the family will keep the memories alive when I’m gone as well.
Early in his history with the Israelites, God instructed them to keep the memories alive. Not family memories necessarily, but commandment memories. The only way their children and grandchildren would know God’s commands was if they talked about them continuously. Regardless of where they were, God’s mandates were to be on their lips.
The only way to move items from short term into the long term memory bank is through memorization and continual use. I memorized multiplication tables as a middle schooler and have used them all my life. I don’t have to think about what eight times six is. I’ve calculated it so many times the answer comes naturally.
So do God’s commands. I’ve known them since I was able to comprehend them. My parents engrafted them into my mind through various teaching methods. I did the same with my children. Hopefully they will do the same with theirs.
Salvation and godliness can’t be forced on family members, but they can be offered by making them a normal part of our speech and by living out the memories through everyday activities.
Are you keeping spiritual memories alive for your family?
Prayer: Father, may we keep the memories of Your commandments alive in our family’s lives.
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