When your children ask in time to come, “What do those stones mean to you?” then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.
The Christian life is, in a sense, one big call to remember. Our Lord Jesus, speaking of the new-covenant meal of Communion, told us, “Do this in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19, emphasis added). Every Lord’s Supper, then, offers us the opportunity to remember together all that is pictured in the bread and wine.
Deuteronomy similarly envisions a scenario in which a son asks his father, “What is the meaning of the testimonies and statutes and the rules that the LORD our God has commanded you?” (Deuteronomy 6:20). The father responds by telling Israel’s story of redemption, highlighting that what God instructs is “for our good always” (v 24). The book of Joshua, too, commends the same kind of commemoration when the Lord instructs the people to set up twelve memorial stones at the Jordan River, so that the stones would be “to the people of Israel a memorial forever.” God wanted His people then—and wants His people today—to ever remember His faithfulness and to tell others what He has done.
Such remembrances and memorials have always been significant. But in a day with endless competing claims on our attention and affections, we perhaps need more reminders of God’s faithfulness than ever before. It’s notable that the examples above are concrete and interpersonal. We participate in the Lord’s Supper together, and it offers us a multisensory experience to help us remember. The twelve stones at the Jordan River constituted a physical memorial. The instruction of Deuteronomy encourages us to have conversations about God’s faithfulness and goodness in our homes.
For today’s Christians, every Sunday presents us with the opportunity to gather and remember with God’s people. But we are going to need more than a weekly touchpoint to sustain ourselves. Ask yourself: What habits can I cultivate to remember God’s goodness? How can I catalog His faithfulness to me and share that with others? What “memorials” can I set up so that I can remember how God delivered me?
Opportunities to see and recall God’s faithfulness abound. All we need to do is look and remember.
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Devotional material is taken from the Truth For Life daily devotional by Alistair Begg, published by The Good Book Company, thegoodbook.com. Used by Truth For Life with permission. Copyright © 2021, The Good Book Company.