As we conclude this week we take one last look at Mark 8:11-21 - http://www.esvbible.org/Mark%208%3A11-21/ -
Jesus asks a very powerful question to His followers to try and help them see what He is doing. The question is this: Do you not remember? In context, Jesus believes that this group of men should be able to interpret what Jesus has said and what He is doing based upon their memory of what He has said and done before.
Guess what…that is true for you and me too. What we remember about past experiences do dictate what we expect to happen in the present and future. However, that means we need to have good memories that are influenced by a Godly worldview in order to have our memories keep us on the right track. Let’s look at the right way for that to happen and then the wrong way for that to happen.
God has given us a memory bank so that we can look at current situations in light of what we have seen in the past. For instance, the disciples should have been able to look back into their memories and say ‘Jesus fed 4000 with 7 loaves and 5000 with 12 loaves therefore Jesus doesn’t need bread therefore He is clearly not talking about the need for more bread when He speaks of leaven therefore He must be using an illustration about yeast growing in dough and since He just spent time with a group who had let seeds of pride, bitterness, faithlessness grow in them…maybe Jesus is telling us to stay away from that’. (forgive the run-on sentence but our minds don’t always use punctuation when sorting through memories). Likewise, you and I should be able to look into our memories of God’s Word and our memories of what God has done around us and interpret/discern better and better. When good and Godly memories keep you then you are better off!
Unfortunately, our memories can also be used negatively. Here is a made-up example from the same event as above: ‘Jesus just told me to 'beware the leaven’ and I was already paranoid because I forgot to bring enough bread to share with everyone…I have had many past experiences where people use sarcasm and passive/aggressive jabs to make a point…therefore that is probably what Jesus is doing…He is chiding me for not bringing bread…I am so embarrassed…I think I will blame one of the other disciples to try and divert the criticism’. Do you see how our negative memories can actually keep us from experiencing truth, life and understanding? When we interpret everything by bad memories then there is zero chance of good outcome.
What memories keep you? Good or bad? What good memories can you put into your heart, mind and spirit so that you are kept by the good truths of God and so that you interpret well instead of poorly? What bad memories have kept you from experiencing what God has for you? What are you going to do about them?
For more devotional thoughts you can visit www.windcitychurch.org/blog/ . We meet for worship at 3:16pm each Sunday at The Link at 353 W. A Street in downtown Casper. Be Our Guest on Sunday or at one of our Missional Communities that meet at various times and locations around the Casper Metro Area.