Read Genesis 8:1-19.
But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and all the domestic animals that were with him in the ark.
“God remembered” is a repeated theme in scripture. Over and over we’re told that God remembered, which is a way of saying that God hasn’t forgotten us. And “us” is all of creation. God’s remembering isn’t merely God reminiscing, or thinking good thoughts. God’s remembering involves acting. In this text, God’s remembering results in the restoration of all creation.
Remembering isn’t only for God to do. In scripture, people are also urged to remember God. Remembering that we are God’s beloved keeps us connected to “where we’re from.” Our remembering, like God’s remembering, results in actions of healing and restoration. This story reminds us there is an ebb and flow to all this remembering. Waters rise and fall. Birds fly out, fly back, and then fly off. Muddy earth produces olive trees.
God remembers, you and I remember, ancestors remember, descendants remember, creation remembers. All that has been, all that will be, all that is, remembers where we are from, and where we are headed. Everything held in the loving presence of the God, who remembers it all.
Remembering God, our remembering brings all sorts of emotions: joy, sadness, happiness, regrets… Advent and Christmas bring all sorts of emotions also. Keep us grounded in your tender love, help us remember where we’re from and that you journey with us at all times and in all places. Increase our capacity to love as you love. Amen.
United Campus Christian Fellowship (Grand Rapids & Allendale, MI)