Have you ever noticed how often the Jews built memorials in the Old Testament? Cross a sea; build a memorial. Cross a river; build another memorial. Struggle with God; build a memorial. To paraphrase the old English expression, can you swing a dead sheep in Israel without hitting a memorial?
Why is that? Why the big emphasis on remembering?
Have you ever noticed how often God or an angel speaking for God tells people not to be afraid? See a burning bush; don’t be afraid. Leaving Egypt tonight after I kill all the firstborn sons; don’t be afraid. Jesus is risen; don’t be afraid. That’s a lot of not being afraid.
Why is that? Why aren’t we to fear?
Do these two concepts have anything in common? Yeah. They do.
God is faithful. He does what He says. Need to get away from your enemies? God will part a sea and let you walk through on dry land. Need to win a fight? God will stop the sun from moving so you can win a battle. Need salvation? God will kill Himself so you don’t have to die.
This is a little bitty glimpse of the proofs of God’s faithfulness and love for His children.
But we humans…we forget. We see the storm or the waves or the giant army and we forget that God is bigger.
So God tells us to build memorials. He encouraged the Jews to mark certain spots and tell their children and grandchildren what those memorials mean. Read through the psalms. Time and again King David refers to God’s faithfulness in the Exodus. Why? Because that was a doozy of a proof of God’s faithfulness, that’s why.
Fear has plagued me this last month. Fear of the future. Fear of the unknown. I forgot for a little while just how big my God is. In His faithfulness, He reminded me.
Blessed be the name of the LORD!
As you go forward, I encourage you to build your own memorials of God’s faithfulness. It may be a prayer journal, a poem, a bracelet or a tattoo. Tell people about it. Look at it and remember the good things God has done in the past. He will continue to provide for the future.
You don’t need to be afraid. God is faithful.
“He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” Psalm 91:4 NIV