Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Memory (07/10/08)
TITLE: Memorable Moments Made Meliorate
By Chris Stanley
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Though most of us have wonderful memories we still know that challenges and tribulations are a guarantee in life. We have all lived long enough to know that everyone is going to have problems and issues to deal with. Recently, there was a family in my church, who had two close relatives pass away in the same day. Personally, I have watched Satan attack two ministries that I have been deeply involved in leaving many people hurt. I have heard it said that we are either in the midst of a trial, just getting out of a trial, or we are about to go into a trial.
Should we then live in fear? Are we to focus on or trials or at least focus on developing solutions to the dilemmas in our life? Are our memories supposed to be centered on our tribulations? That would be absurd. So how do we deal with issues? Are we able to generate more positive memories rather than the plethora of bad memories we tend to accumulate? Can we manage our memory and train ourselves to remember the good and not the bad? Are we able to program our brains as we do with our computers and delete the bad while only keeping and maintaining the good? The answers are emphatically “No!” In my study of scripture I believe that it is not so much a programming change we need to go through but rather a paradigm shift.
If our focus is on ourselves and a desire for self-improvement then our focus will always be ultimately on the negative. Our vision will zoom directly onto our flaws. Our desire is often to become as good of a person as possible. What that means is that we are currently not a “good person” or at least not a perfect person. So when we strive for self improvement we focus on the bad areas in our life and try to fix them. Even if we resolve issue after issue in our life there is always something left that needs repair.
A paradigm shift, as mentioned earlier is the solution. We need to move our thought process away from ourselves and onto God. As a quick illustration read the account of Jesus and Peter walking on water in Matthew 14. Peter was able to walk on water until he took his focus off of Jesus. Imagine for a moment that we lived our life with every thought centered on God and His work. Our very existence would be to do nothing but minister to others using our God given gifts, talents, and abilities. Now try to picture what our memory would be like if we lived that lifestyle. Memories would not be about hurdles or trials we went through in order to minister. Instead our memories would be on the results of our ministry. We would realize how we have demonstrated the love God showed us just as God commanded us to do. Our focus would shift from worry about ourselves to planning how to share Gods love more than we ever have before.
In order to make our most memorable moments even better we must make a commitment. Not only to ourselves, but to God as well, we must pledge to keep God as our focus. Ministry must be our priority. Putting God absolutely first in our lives will force us to move forward in life with nothing but love. When everything is done in love for the cause of Christ then how can we be left with even a single bad memory?
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