Dory, in the film Finding Nemo, has a problem. She suffers from short term memory loss. Very short term! She can’t remember things just minutes after they’ve been told to her.
Often in our walk with God, we can be like Dory. God speaks to us, He reminds us how much He loves us; that He will never leave us or forsake us, that if we have been born again through faith in His Son Jesus then we are His and nothing can ever change that and that He has a purpose for our lives.
And we feel so blessed. Anchored. Safe and secure.
Then, seemingly out of nowhere, trouble hits. Hubby is made redundant at work. The car breaks down, the bank account goes into the red, the toilet springs a leak, the dog dies, the children need new school shoes, Granny needs a serious operation – all in the space of a few days!
And we become like Dory – we forget. We forget the very same faithful God we were praising just days or hours before for His goodness to us.
I’ll let you in on a little secret… shhhh, don’t tell anyone. I’m a lot like Dory.
Yesterday, after writing the blog post I did about being “Restored, Refilled & Reloaded”. After God had encouraged my heart so much in the early morning, you’d think I’d be all “rah rah” wouldn’t you? But less than two hours later, I had a ‘Dory Moment’ and was crying on my friend’s shoulder at church.
HAS GOD CHANGED – HAS HE FORGOTTEN ME?
Never. Not for one moment!
“Yet Jerusalem says, “The Lord has deserted us; the Lord has forgotten us.” “Never! Can a mother forget her nursing child? Can she feel no love for the child she has borne? But even if that were possible, I would not forget you! See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands. Always in my mind is a picture of Jerusalem’s walls in ruins.”
I love this depiction of God as the tender, loving parent. What mother, even in our human frailty, could ignore the cries of her hungry baby?
He never forgets me. Never turns His face away from me. His heart is moved at the sound of my cry:
“In panic I cried out, “I am cut off from the Lord!” But you heard my cry for mercy and answered my call for help.”
“But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I prayed to my God for help. He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears.” Psalms 18:6
There are so many verses throughout the Bible that speak of God hearing when we cry out to Him, but I chose those two specifically because of how they start off – “In panic” “In my distress”
Here’s King David, a man after God’s own heart, a ‘hero’ of the faith, admitting that he had had a ‘Dory moment’. He had temporarily ‘forgotten’ and allowed his emotions to get the better of him in his circumstances – he was being hounded and pursued by Saul.
So he had panicked. He had felt distressed. And then, as David cried out to God, God instantly responded. And David remembered!
HELP WHEN WE NEED IT MOST
Sometimes when life feels chaotic we plead with God for what He has already promised to us! As if He doesn’t already know our situation. As if we weren’t His precious children.
I love the way the NLT translates Hebrews 4:16: “So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.”
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
So where is God in the crises and stresses of our lives? He’s here. “Very present”.
He hasn’t changed. His love for you hasn’t waned, nor has His faithfulness. And these will never change.
Isaiah 40:27-29 :
“Why do you say, O Jacob, and speak, O Israel, “My way is hidden from the Lord, and my right is disregarded by my God”? Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength.”
Be encouraged if you are having a Dory moment today. You aren’t alone in your temporary memory lapse. But don’t stay there. Remind yourself, like David did, who God is, who you are to God and in God!
“Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” Psalms 43:5