Renewal Through Remembering

I’m continuing my series on gospel-centered renewal with excerpts and commentary focusing on how we experience renewal in the Christian life.  If our union with Christ is the heart of renewal, then we should also consider the main arteries from which such nourishment and vitality comes.

Today I want to encourage you to consider how remembering the works of the Lord bring renewal in the Christian life, and in particular, I want to pull from the book of Psalms. There are times in our lives where we are hungry and feel empty, thirsty and cannot find water to satisfy being parched, downcast in spirit and seemingly walking in perpetual darkness.  When your life feels like it is being wasted away, what do you do to find renewal?  You remember who God is and meditate and all that He has done, specifically in the gospel.

In Psalm 42, we find the psalmist panting and thirsting for God where his tears have been his food day and night.  The refrain of this psalm reveals the nature of his struggle, “Why are you cast down, O my soul?” (Psalm 42:5, 11).  The answer to this question is hoping in God by remembering what He has done.  Verse 4 explains:

These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise, a multitude keeping festival.
Psalm 42:4

Again, in Psalm 63 we find King David at a time where his soul thirsts and flesh faints for God “as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.”  How is David satisfied and renewed? When he remembers how the Lord has been his help and meditates on him.  He writes:

5 My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips, 6 when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night; 7 for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. 8 My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.
Psalm 63:5-8

Psalm 78, 105, and 106 are testimonies of the works of God in the history of redemption speaking to God’s covenant faithfulness and steadfast love to deliver, protect, provide, and guide.  Psalm 105:5 command us to “remember the wondrous works that he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he uttered” and in doing so be renewed to live faithfully in the promises of God.  Yet, the sad testimony of Israel is that they were not renewed because they forget the works of the Lord. Hear the report:

6 Both we and our fathers have sinned; we have committed iniquity; we have done wickedness. 7 Our fathers, when they were in Egypt, did not consider your wondrous works; they did not remember the abundance of your steadfast love, but rebelled by the sea, at the Red Sea.
Psalm 106:6-7

After all that God had done for them to rescue them, again it is reported that  “they soon forgot his works; they did not wait for his counsel” (Psalm 106:13).  The sin, iniquity, and wickedness stems from a forgetfulness that is the seed of rebellion against God.  Forgetfulness results in unfaithfulness, and unfaithfulness spiritual adultery and “playing the whore.”  Should we not consider then the importance of remembering the Lord and having the gospel afresh in our minds that we not become functional atheists and fail to live in the power of the resurrection, walking in newness of life?

May we be like Asaph who appeals to the “years of the right hand of the Most High” and declared:

11 I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your wonders of old. 12 I will ponder all your work, and meditate on your mighty deeds. 13 Your way, O God, is holy. What god is great like our God? 14 You are the God who works wonders; you have made known your might among the peoples. 15 You with your arm redeemed your people, the children of Jacob and Joseph.
Psalm 77:10-15

What a striking contrast we see here!  While forgetfulness led to rebellion and wickedness, remembering and meditating on the mighty works of God led Asaph to awe and wonder at the majesty and power of God who redeems His people.

What you and have before us each day is the opportunity to be renewed in our devotion to Jesus Christ through remembering what He has done and mediating on all that He is for us.  Consider how the Lord has been merciful and gracious to die for the ungodly, to bring new life, to indwell you with His Spirit, and fill you with everlasting joy.  Remember how Jesus took the curse that was ours, paid the price for our sins, and purchased us with his precious blood.  Daily fill your heart and mind with the gospel wherein we see the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ and such remembrance will daily renew you to experience the mighty hand of God for even greater works to be done in your midst.  When you awaken each day with hope that renewal is provided by an all-pervasive consciousness of God’s faithfulness, you can join the psalmist who exclaimed:

1 Praise the Lord! I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart, in the company of the upright, in the congregation. 2 Great are the works of the Lord, studied by all who delight in them. 3 Full of splendor and majesty is his work, and his righteousness endures forever. 4 He has caused his wondrous works to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and merciful.
Psalm 111:1-4

Explore posts in the same categories: Renewal

Tags: , , ,

You can comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.

One Comment on “Renewal Through Remembering”

  1. […] 2.  I Am Being Made New (Part 1) 3.  I Am Being Made New (Part 2) 4.  I Will Be Made New 5.  Renewal Through Remembering 6.  Gospel Renewal Through the Fear of the Lord 7.  Jonathan Edwards on Continued Transformation […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: