Remember To Forget!
Good Morning!! I can’t believe it is almost Christmas!! We finally have some snow here, as I write this, and it so beautiful! That is saying a lot coming from a person who does not love the cold! As we go through this final week before the holidays, I know how crazy life can get and how easy it is to allow our minds to be filled with all kinds of distraction (some good and some bad). Today, however, I want to draw our attention back to the beautiful truth of our celebration. We have talked many times about our call to “Remember” during this time of year. I’m sure you have been reminded during sermons at church, messages on the radio, or time spent at various Christmas events, but today I want to remind us “To Remember to Forget!” This is a phrase my daughter said the other day while Christmas shopping and it resonated with where I have been with The Lord lately. I don’t know if you have ever had to buy something for someone who was right there with you? I actually needed my daughter to pick out one of her own gifts the other day and I told her that she had to forget I had bought that for her. Her response to me was, “Don’t worry mom, I will remember to forget!” I loved that because it reminded me of something the Lord had been sharing with me the last few days. I am sure some of you can relate to this, but lately the enemy has been attacking me by reminding me of my past sins and trying to bring up again who I was before I surrendered my life to Christ. Many of you may know my testimony, but it was becoming a continual sadness as I was spending far too much time focusing on how broken I had been. I kept remembering how I had looked for love in the wrong places, and how I had become trapped in so much bondage. I found that I was repenting yet again for all those past mistakes, and I as I was talking with The Lord, He gently spoke to my heart saying something SO profound to me. He said, “Ashley, I have NOT asked you to remember what YOU have done, I have asked you to remember what I have done!” Immediately I realized how true and powerful that statement was. I began searching every scripture I could find on remembrance and I was overwhelmed to find that it was in fact true! Over and Over again God calls us to remember HIM, to remember ALL He has done! We talked about that a couple weeks ago, however, He does NOT call us to Remember ALL that WE have Done!! Right now, in this time of Celebration we are supposed to be remembering What God has done for us in sending His Son! Because the Word of God took on flesh and dwelt among us, Because God came in Humility as a human baby, Because He lived His life as an example of Humble Service, Because He was obedient even to the point of death, death on a cross, we no longer have to focus on what we have done, but we can focus wholeheartedly on what Christ has done for us!! His coming to this earth has set us free. His Humility became our Victory!! The punishment that He took for us purchased our Peace! By His stripes, we are Healed!! All because He came to this Earth for us!! That is what we remember! That is what we are to focus on! And now, He says “I will forgive their wickedness, and I will Never again Remember their sins!” (Heb. 8:12) He also says, “I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.” (Is. 43:25) “For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And He gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation!” (2 Cor. 5:19) I could share more and more of the Bible passages that tell us the same thing, but I hope we are starting to see that this is what we are called to remember. Your sins and my sins were not Shocking to God. Those very sins were the whole reason He came. He came to reconcile each and every one of us to Him. He came to pay for our sins and offer us the GIFT of FORGIVENESS!!! I want us to understand the very definition of that word. Forgiveness in the New Testament means this, “a release from bondage and imprisonment, pardon of sins (letting them go as if they have never been committed) to forsake, to put away, to NOT DISCUSS AGAIN.” WOW!! I have always been stuck on that last one!! When I fell on my knees at 17 and asked Jesus to be the LORD of my Life, when I surrendered my life to Him and asked Him to forgive me that is exactly what He did! His love invaded my heart and cleansed me of ALL unrighteousness!! He forgave me and will NEVER DISCUSS MY SINS AGAIN!! That is what I am called to remember this holiday season! NOT what I have done, but what God has done for me!! Forgiving and Forgetting are not two separate things for God. When He forgives, He forgets! Period! He wipes the board clean. He deletes the data. That is His gift to us this Christmas Season! If you have surrendered your life to Jesus Christ, He offers you this Gift. And with that He says to us, “My sweet Child, Remember to Forget!!! I ask you to Remember NOT what YOU have done, But What I have done FOR YOU!
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
Scriptures to meditate on this Week: Heb. 8:12, Is. 43:25, 2 Cor. 5:19, Ps. 103:11, 1 John 1:9, Phil. 3:13