Pastor Anne Williams is the Congregational Care pastor for members of the Resurrection family who have last names beginning with S-Z.
In his sermon on Sunday, Pastor Adam talked about the problem of spiritual amnesia – when we forget who we are, when we forget whose we are, when we forget all that God has done for us. Forgetting that God is our Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer is one of the most detrimental things that can happen in our faith. Today’s passage from Deuteronomy reminds us that sometimes it is by teaching children about our faith that we ourselves are reminded of what we believe and why we believe it. I don’t have any children of my own, but I do recall that things like facilitating Vacation Bible Camp, leading youth on mission trips, and even singing Jesus Loves Me with my niece are things that can remind me that I, too am a beloved child of God.
For those of you who have attended an authentic Seder meal (the Jewish commemoration of the Passover meal), you may remember that one of the main intentions of this ritual is to retell the story of God’s provision for the Israelite people – to remind themselves who they are. Part of the liturgy includes four questions asked by the youngest child in the family about the things that are taking place. These might not be the same questions asked by children in a Christian tradition, but we are forced to think what questions our children might ask of us. Are there habits going in on our households that indicate we are different in some way? Have your children ever asked you why you pray before you eat? Why you make a point to get to worship each weekend? Why you wake up a few minutes early to read the GPS each morning?
The instruction we have in Deuteronomy is to “tie (God’s commandments) as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.” We need every reminder possible of God’s love for us. There are signs and placards and picture frames decorating our homes that remind us of our favorite scripture passages, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord – Joshua 24:15,” or “This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it! – Psalm 118:24.” I especially love one sign that hangs in my sister-in-law’s kitchen that reads, “God of second chances and new beginnings, here I come again!”
Find the things (tangible things or habit things) that will serve to remind you that the God of the Universe loves you. And then, when the little children ask about those things, celebrate sharing your faith with the generation that follows you!
Return to the GPS Guide to read today’s scripture and reflection questions.