Summary: A sermon for our older folks service that focusses on how God remembers us, forgets our sins and we must remember what Jesus has done for us.
Remembering. Silver Service. 4 Oct 2004
Is 49:13-17, Ps 103:8-16, Jer 31:34
the visiting city dweller was amazed when the farmer gave a whistle and his dog herded the cattle into the corral, then latched the gate with her paw. "Wow, that’s some dog. What’s her name?" The forgetful farmer thought a minute, then asked "What do you call that red flower that smells good and has thorns on the stem?" "a rose." "That’s it!" The farmer turned to his wife. "Hey Rose, what do we call this dog?"
Memory is a marvellous thing. Something God allows us
- often fall asleep remembering old houses of the past… the sound of doors… where I played
o im moments of sentimentality (Christmas!) have felt overwhelmed with memories and their feelings
o that’s just me at 42! I’m still a mere lad! What of those who are much older, I think?
- Mum: “feel like there are almost too many memories”
- But also- a great blessing! Memories of happiness ,loved ones…
The Bible tells us that God remembers
He remembers US
- when we feel forgotten. Alone.
o “can a MOTHER forget?”
o no –neither does God
- when there is something that bothers us
o Is 40 “my cause is disregarded by my God”
o “Have you not heard… He is the everlasting God who does not grow tired or weary and His understanding no one can fathom…. And not one star is missing because of his attention to detail”
No- God does not forget. Not anything. Not anything that matters to us
- even the pain. Ps 56:8 – records our tears on His scroll, KJV
o put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?
- Wartime Tear Jars. Tears stored up and taken with soldier
He remembers. He knows that we are just ‘dust’. We are not forgotten or forsaken by him
And to help US remember that HE remembers He tells us to REMEMBER His deeds in the past
- to reflect and remember His faithfulness
- again and again: ‘remember what I did for you’
Illustr: Ron Fordenham at Bushey (1st church. I was a whippersnapper) “I pity you. You haven’t got all the years of answered prayers to look back on like I have. Years of God’s proven faithfulness”
Those of you who are Christians, and have been for years, willl have SO many examples to look back on and remember
- remind you that God remembers
Can be a bit frightening when you think that God sees and remembers everything! Everything you’ve done and said.
- especially when you think that we’re all going to have to give an account to him for them!
o A lifetime of things
But here’s the incredible thing! God forgets, as well. He has selective memory! Or, how the Bible puts it:
- when we say sorry for those things we’ve done wrong:
- “I will remember their sins no more” Jer 31:34
- “ As far as the east is from the west” Ps103
So- our God with an incredible memory… who made EVERYTHING… when you go back to Him a second time to ‘confess’ something says “What?!”
The story is told of a young girl in the Catholic Church who claimed she was having visions of Jesus, and that He would come and speak to her. The hierarchies of the church were having great difficulty knowing whether they should validate these visions as genuine. They applied many tests to them to verify them- but the result was never clear. Finally, one of the priests decided he knew how he would discover if the young girl really was being visited by Jesus or not. he asked her: ’next time you talk with Jesus like this, ask Him what sin I confessed to Him, secretly, last night!’.
The next time he saw the girl he asked her: ’have you spoken with Him, then". "yes", she replied. "So, what did He say when you asked Him what I confessed in secret?
"He said: ’I can’ t remember. I’ve forgotten"
When we confess our sins God takes them and throws them in the deepest sea and puts up a sign ‘no fishing’
And you know why He can do this?
- because of Jesus. Because He paid for them
- because of Jesus’ sacrifice on our behalf
So, today, we remember:
- God’s faithfulness over the years
- That He remembers us
- That He forgets & forgives our sins
- Jesus’ death and sacrifice
o That meant we could live
o Do that during communion
And we remember those who gave their lives for our freedom
- like Jesus did
They shall not grow old
as we that are left grow old: