The following is a YouVersion plan written by the Billy Graham Center. To participate with this plan on YouVersion, download the app, create an account and click on the link here to participate:
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Read Deuteronomy 8:1-7
Leading up to this passage, God has just given to Israel his greatest commandment—love the Lord your God (Deut. 6:5)—and established his relationship to them: the Lord your God has chosen you (Deut. 7:6). Now God reinforces these two truths with the key to living them out faithfully.
Commanding Israel to be faithful, God connects this obedience with taking care in the importance of remembering. In scripture, the call to remember is always attached to covenant faithfulness. To remember is to remain faithful while to forget is to fall away. This is why God is regularly depicted as the one who remembers (Gen. 8:1; 1 Sam. 1:19; Ps. 105:42). It is a way of expressing his steadfast love and faithfulness: he remembers his covenant with his people.
For God’s people, however, there is always the temptation to forget—not only what God has done, but also what he has commanded us to do in the present. Israel was to live a certain way because God was real, he had made them his people, and he had liberated them from captivity.
Just as God was real, so his law was real. To forget God’s actions in history was to invalidate or at least lesson the realness of his law. In this passage, God specifies what he wants them to remember: He had not abandoned them to hunger or cold in the wilderness but supernaturally provided for them. In their need, God has been there.
One of the reasons why forgetting God’s faithfulness for us in the past can be so destructive is because it blinds us to his presence and provision in the midst of current struggle. We face challenges and worry that God is not there, that the problem is too great, or that the future is too uncertain. Remembering is critical to faithfulness because it confronts these thoughts with the truth of God’s track record.
Take time to list out what God has done in past seasons in the wilderness. How did he answer your prayers in that season? How did he grow your faith?
How can you share your stories of remembering with neighbors, friends, and family during their times of difficulty?
We would like to thank Billy Graham Center for providing this plan. For more information, please visit: http://www.billygrahamcenter.com