Stones of Remembrance: Reflecting on God's Faithfulness
I am truly grateful for the heartfelt invitation extended by Lori Davis during our church's adult community group gathering for the Thanksgiving program. Her call to "remember" has resonated deeply within me, urging me to reflect on the abundant provision and comforting presence of God in our most vulnerable moments. Drawing parallels from the biblical narrative of David and the symbolism of the twelve stones at Jericho, we were encouraged to contemplate God's enduring promises.
"Don't worry about anything, instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs and don't forget to thank Him for His answers. If you do this you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet as you trust in Christ Jesus."
- Philippians 4:6-7 The Living Bible
She provided us with five stones with the assignment to remember similar needs we've faced before and how God has met these needs. As we face the end-of-year race, I find solace in recounting five distinct moments where God's faithfulness has been evident.
One of my stones involved a small church prayer group, where prayers led to my acceptance at Trinity International University South Florida Campus with a full tuition scholarship for my undergraduate studies. Dr. Elizabeth Skjoldal, who is currently at Moody Bible Institute, played a transformative role in my life, offering mentorship and forging crucial connections that propelled me towards my pursuit of graduate studies. It was through these studies that my husband and I found our way to Wheaton in 2001, embarking on a remarkable journey of growth.
Reflecting on all these moments, I recall the heaviness, the overwhelming pressure, the tension as we waited for God's timing, for clarity in the decisions that needed to be made, for guidance in the next wise step.
And something shifted in my heart as I remembered his provision that came in His perfect timing.
There is a reason why the Bible tells us to remember more than 250 times!
In fact, in the realm of marriage programs and therapeutic approaches for couples, it is common practice to encourage partners to reminisce about their journey together, to recount the qualities that drew them to each other, and to reflect on the marriage covenant.
As parents, we also practice this technique. When my children can't locate their shoes, assignments, or craft supplies, I frequently encourage them to reflect on the last place they remember seeing the desired item.
The topic of memories is a complex one, and recent advancements in neuroscience have shed light on how memories are formed and on the process of forgetting. Our brains are naturally designed to filter out information that is deemed unimportant, allowing us to focus on what truly matters. It would be inefficient to constantly be overwhelmed with unnecessary memories. When we do recollect something as simple as someone's name, we form connections between neurons in the brain. These synapses create new circuits between nerve cells, essentially remapping the brain.
As our minds often gravitate towards fear, negative thinking, and bitterness, the act of remembering how God has shown up helps us reshape our natural inclinations. It doesn't diminish the seriousness of the situation at hand, but it eases the burden of tension we carry.
When we take a moment to reflect and express gratitude, we unlock a multitude of extraordinary benefits for our mind, body, and soul. From enhancing self-assurance and cultivating patience to building resilience and increasing pain tolerance, the act of remembrance has a profound impact on our overall well-being.
So, let us pause and remember with gratitude, embracing the countless rewards that come with this practice.
During this season of gratitude, I invite you to also remember the moments that have shaped your journey and create your own stones of remembrance that will inspire and motivate you to keep running the race.
How have you seen God supply all your needs?