Don’t Forget

Posted: March 20, 2013 in Uncategorized

remind-yourselfI am horrible for remembering things. I am constantly forgetting what I am suppose to be doing, often right in the middle of doing it. And names, forget about it, hey I’m doing good if I can remember who my kids are. Anyhow, what was I saying, oh yeah, this is why I constantly need to be preaching the gospel to myself each and everyday! Otherwise, not only do I forget how it was/is I am saved, but I soon find myself wandering off into either legalism (basing my acceptance with God on my behaviour) or antinomianism (thinking that because of God’s grace my behaviour doesn’t matter). And so, I constantly need to be reminded of the truth.

With this in mind, here is a very good list, from Matt Reagan over at DesiringGod, of things to remind ourselves of everyday…

1) God exists. (Exodus 3:14John 8:58)

It seems so simple, so basic, but I tend to wake up a naturalist, and a narcissistic one at that. I assume that all there is in the world is what is in front of my face. My bed, my wife, my kids, and most importantly myself. The simple yet ultimate existence of God immediately clears my lens, makes me small, and infuses meaning into every step. God exists — and that changes everything.

2) God loves you. (Romans 5:8John 16:27Jeremiah 32:40–41)

Another massive biblical reality, this immediately counters my hesitation to embrace God’s ultimate authority, reminding me that he has set his affections on this little speck of a person. He is far from indifferent toward me.

3) Jesus died for you, and the Father has now bound himself to give you only good things. (Romans 8:28Romans 8:32)

This draws me quickly to the central reality of all history: the cross. It is an objective truth set in time and space, so it immediately draws my gaze away from my own capacity to garner acceptance from God through my efforts. Furthermore, the outworkings of the cross make clear that even the harshest trials will come to me as blessing, for my ultimate good, no matter how bad I feel at the time.

4) God sees you as perfect. (Hebrews 10:142 Corinthians 5:21)

My self-absorption, anxiety, and self-pity know no bounds. They must be beaten into submission by the beauty of imputed righteousness. The question, “How am I doing?” is met head-on with the answer, “Perfect.” In that regard, every day is a good day.

5) That is because of Jesus’s perfection, not yours. You deserve hell. (Romans 3:101 Timothy 1:15)

There are two main purposes here: first, to counterpunch when my flesh looks for a way to subtly claim credit for the perfection that is mine only in Jesus; second, to maintain a sense of trembling gratitude for my salvation. While I enjoy the glory of the gospel, there should always be an awestruck voice in the back of my mind that is whispering, “I shouldn’t be here.”

6) You will die. (James 4:14Hebrews 9:27)

Nothing brings clarity to me like this simple and straightforward reminder. How quickly I assume my earthly immortality, and how often I need to think of myself as a terminal cancer patient.

7) You will live forever in the new heavens and new earth. (Romans 8:18Hebrews 10:34)

I don’t want to be a clear-headed fearer of death, like some atheistic poet. I want to glory in the guarantee of indescribable bliss that is just around the corner. And I want to live like it’s real — because it is.

8) For now, you are an exile on the earth. (Hebrews 11:13–16)

This keeps me from feeling at home when I’m not at home (especially in my own home). It prepares me for not fitting in, for weird looks when I speak with conviction about Jesus, and for holding loosely to every bit of earthly life.

9) Nothing on earth is truly worth putting your hope in. (Jeremiah 2:13Galatians 6:14)

This is a practical specification of #8. It is right for me to remember that I will inevitably be disappointed by every earthly pursuit or relationship or emotional experience. It runs me back to my true Home and the true Bridegroom.

10) You have no right to be unhappy. (Philippians 4:41 Peter 1:8–9)

This is a summarizing application of all the previous reminders, but it merits its own slot. How quick I am to become “blah” when there is a treasure trove of happy reality at my disposal! I must beat this into my discontent little brain. I can be plenty unhappy, but I have no right to be.

“When the LORD your God brings you into the land that he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give you—with great and good cities that you did not build, and houses full of all good things that you did not fill, and cisterns that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive trees that you did not plant—and when you eat and are full, then take care lest you forget the LORD, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.” – Deuteronomy 6:10-12 (ESV)

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Comments
  1. debbido says:

    A great reminder! We should keep it on a card, close at hand, to encourage others as well as ourselves.

  2. debbido says:

    A great reminder! We should keep this on a card, close at hand, to encourage others as well as ourselves.

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