Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Wednesday, November, 11, 2015

 Luke 1:72-75

Thus he has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,
   and has remembered his holy covenant, 
the oath that he swore to our ancestor Abraham,
   to grant us that we, being rescued from the hands of our enemies,
might serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness
   before him all our days.

The God who remembers

The human heart hungers to be remembered. When we are forgotten we feel cast off, disconnected and without hope. The opposite of being re-membered is dis-membered, separated, broken in pieces scattered about. 

The human heart flees this terror. We long to be re-membered, our members—arms and legs, head and heart, body and soul—put back together and made whole, connected again with life.

In the days of his dying, Verel, a Korean War veteran relived the experience of war from his bed in a Nebraska nursing home. He crouched and curled up, feeling again the fear of crouching in a fox hole as artillery exploded around him.

“Remember me. Remember me,” he cried out again and again. This was his prayer. It's a good one. It speaks the deep fear of our hearts, crying to God to remember us in our distress lest we be torn apart by life and lost in death.

Verel’s prayer is everywhere. It stares back at us from our television screens in the hollow eyes of hungry children. It cries out in the fear of faces in war-torn places as missiles rain death from the sky in the darkness of night, destroying  towns and killing tens of thousands.

I head this prayer in every refugee camp I ever entered in my days of reporting. It didn’t matter what country or continent I was in. I saw it in their eyes and heard it every time they asked, “Does the world know? Are we forgotten?”

The prayer hits closer to home as I sit in a Bible study and listen as an older person wonders who will remember her when she is gone. Her children will remember, her grandchildren, too. But after that will she become an unknown face in an undated photo?

No, never. She will be remembered, her life whole and held in a Mercy beyond every expectation and hope. The refugee, the hungry child on the evening news, Verel, too, all of them—and us—remembered by the Loving Mystery who never forgets.

You are held, always, in the Love of the God who knows your name. Cast off all fear ... and know.

Pr. David L. Miller

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