Thought for the day – Friday 12 June

Thought for the day - Friday 12 June

Dear All

Have you ever put something valuable in a safe place and then forgotten where the safe place is? Everyone has their own ways, systems and methods of remembering things. Just about every fridge I’ve seen in peoples’ kitchens, including my own, is bedecked with magnets of all shapes and sizes. Magnets, along with ‘post-it’ notes help us with our shopping lists, phone numbers and a multitude of things ‘to do’. We all need little reminders and as time passes the notes get bigger and there’s a lot more of them.

At times we temporarily forget names, car registrations, dates and the all-important passwords and pin numbers that have to be reset from time to time. You’ll know what I mean if you’ve ever stood at a cash machine and muttered to yourself, ‘what’s that number again?’, and with only one more chance left, you leave without your cash to ‘gather your thoughts’. A simple distraction, lapse in concentration can put you off.

Remembering is made much easier by using rhyme and little ditty’s. We make up our own and can recite effortlessly those learned from childhood. We all know, ‘Remember, remember the fifth of November, and ‘thirty days hath September and so on’…

I don’t know if anyone has ever tied a knot in a hanky or, if they have, whether or not it works. I don’t think ‘hankies’ are used as they once were as tissues are more common and hygienic and not so easy to tie knots in.

Mnemonics too are very useful and effective and I think once we practice using them we rarely forget. In music, remembering the notes on the guitar or piano are used in the early lessons, for example, E, G, B, D, F (All Good Boys Deserve Football) and helps keep us right. Sometimes!!

In many Jewish homes, on the door frames, you will find a little decorative case called a Mezuzah in which is contained passages from the Torah, and tied on the foreheads of some Jews are little box/boxes called tefillin or phylacteries which also contain writings from the Torah. Both the Mezuzah and the phylactery are the reminders that we read about in today’s passage.

The Israelites as they entered and settled in the promised land, and were instructed to remember their times in Egypt, and their wanderings in the desert. They were not only to remember them but also teach the young about their experiences and so pass this on from one generation to the next. The beginnings and continuation of a religious tradition still observed to this day.

Although we are out of sight and distant from one another, we still think and care for each other in our thoughts and prayers. We remember one another and look forward to being together again. ‘Not forgetting’ is perhaps, more ‘passive’ whereas deliberately ‘remembering’ is ‘active’. We do remember one another, we don’t just ‘not forget’

Today I ask you to think/meditate on these things…

God bless you!

Jim

JBoag@churchofscotland.org.uk

DEUTERONOMY 6

These are the commands, decrees and laws the Lord your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life. Hear, Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you.

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

When the Lord your God brings you into the land he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give you—a land with large, flourishing cities you did not build, houses filled with all kinds of good things you did not provide, wells you did not dig, and vineyards and olive groves you did not plant—then when you eat and are satisfied, be careful that you do not forget the Lord, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.

Fear the Lord your God, serve him only and take your oaths in his name. Do not follow other gods, the gods of the peoples around you; for the Lord your God, who is among you, is a jealous God and his anger will burn against you, and he will destroy you from the face of the land. Do not put the Lord your God to the test as you did at Massah. Be sure to keep the commands of the Lord your God and the stipulations and decrees he has given you. Do what is right and good in the Lord’s sight, so that it may go well with you and you may go in and take over the good land the Lord promised on oath to your ancestors, thrusting out all your enemies before you, as the Lord said.

In the future, when your son asks you, “What is the meaning of the stipulations, decrees and laws the Lord our God has commanded you?” tell him: “We were slaves of Pharaoh in Egypt, but the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand. Before our eyes the Lord sent signs and wonders—great and terrible—on Egypt and Pharaoh and his whole household. But he brought us out from there to bring us in and give us the land he promised on oath to our ancestors. The Lord commanded us to obey all these decrees and to fear the Lord our God, so that we might always prosper and be kept alive, as is the case today. And if we are careful to obey all this law before the Lord our God, as he has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.”

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