This Advent I’m delighted to bring you a variety of voices – authors, pastors, theologians, and philosophers – each of whom has a unique and beautiful take on a particular passage of Scripture related to the Advent season.
My prayer is that these reflections would help guide your devotional life as you participate in this season of holy waiting.
Without further ado, let’s continue with a reflection from author Marvia Davidson.
Memory * An Advent Reflection by Marvia Davidson
When the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.
–John 14:26, NLT
Memory can be a funny thing. When I think of memory, I also think of worth. I think of what it means to know that I, and others, have inherent value. We carry a divine dignity deep within us, but sometimes we forget or something happens which can cloud our memory.
Recently I have been challenged to remember my own identity and value, that it is not based on what I do but on who I am. I was asked to think about and plot on a chart some of the highs and lows of my career. We were given just five minutes, but I was immediately flooded with many memories, some good and some not so good.
Some memories made my smile with delight while others made me internally grimace with a twinge of heartache. Yet, there was no condemnation. Through the act of my remembering, there was a gentleness in the reminder that I am made for being and not doing. Doing comes from learning to be.
These memories help me to remember how near God has been to me in every valley and on every mountain. He constantly reminds me how his love for me is never predicated on my doing anything but on my being. I remember who and whose I am. I remember God has never left me, and that the Holy Spirit whispers the memories of truth, hope, and divine identity.
As we enter into Advent, I remember the memory of the Christ child, the beloved Son of God who became flesh and blood. He entered into our world bringing redemption and reconciliation. He brought with Him the memory of who and whose we are and have always been. All of his works pointed to memory – remembering what God has already said about us, remembering God’s benevolent love and grace while also tearing down every false memory that separated us from him.
His word never ceases the work of aligning our hearts, minds, and yes, even our memories. This is the work of the cross. Christ reconciles us to the Father as we were meant to be, chosen, forgiven, and accepted in the belovedness of God. Advent points us to this beautiful truth again and again. We remember.
God redeems every part of us. I want to encourage you to think about your memories of identity, “be”-ing, and worth. Maybe something wasn’t taken from you. Maybe you simply forgot. Maybe the stress and pressures of work, life, and home have shrunk your capacity to remember who and whose you are.
Friend, I want to remind you that you are the Beloved. In this Advent season, I believe God is reminding us again of who we have always been in his sight. There is a memory of worth, identity, and belovedness he desires for us, even in how we remember. I believe he redeems it all.
We have redeeming life in Christ. This Advent, this child of hope and promise comes to restore God’s original design for us in grace and truth. Through his work we remember the gift of reconciliation we’ve received through Christ. He entered into full humanity and restored to us who we are meant and designed to be as sons and daughters of God. We are made worthy because of God’s gift of his beloved Son.
This is the memory of identity, worth, and full restoration. It is a memory (if you will) God has that we so often forget.
Today, be encouraged to remember who and whose you are. May the Holy Spirit remind you of your identity as God’s beloved. May you find peace and rest in being a son of God, a daughter of God. May your memories of value and worth be restored this Advent season. You, friend, are ardently and fiercely loved by God.
Marvia Davidson is a Texas writer and creative who enjoys writing, making art, being a change agent, and smashing lies that keep people from living whole. Join her at MarviaDavidson.com. You can also find her on Twitter and Instagram and on Facebook.