I have been reading some of my earlier Lenten posts and one from March 30, 2007 caught my eye. The title is Making Memories With God. The post is about how memories make people important in our lives. There are numerous things that build memories and make people significant. It is probably why guys bond so strongly in warfare. The intensity of the shared experience, of having each other’s back is something that becomes deeply ingrained in our psyche as an indelible memory.
The major question in that earlier post is this. “Have you made an effort to make memories with God?” I point out one of the strong parts of liturgical traditions is the seasons of the year and the major elements of the liturgy, including the Gloria, the Creed, the Confession of Sin, the words of the Consecration, and the Lord’s Prayer. If you are blessed in your liturgical church you will get the same thing a non-liturgical church member gets: good preaching and teaching and good worship and praise and music. But you will get more because of the liturgy noted before that you share together.
While to some, those are rote responses, that misses the point. They are important shared touchstones of faith and part of our ongoing relationship with God our heavenly Father. We have an opportunity from week to week to make memories with God that are continually reinforced and made stronger. Yes, they can become rote. Even “extemporaneous” prayer can become rote. But they don’t have to be. They can become building blocks in your relationship with your Father in heaven as you build memories together. As I said in the earlier post, “…each Sunday, we make memories with God, and continue to build on them from repetition to repetition, from week to week. That is the good side of the process…”
Life is what you make it. God gives you lemons, you make lemonade. He gives you liturgy, you make memories with him. It is always our choice, to use what He has given us to build our Christian life and character, or not. Part of the liturgy of the Anglican way is the observance of Lent. It is a form of liturgy, a yearly repetition for the preparation for Easter. But now I see it as more. It is a way for me to build memories with my God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. My choice. Your choice. Choose now what you will do (paraphrasing Joshua at the River Jordon). As for me, I will build memories with God. Join me.