I was still in my gown at the dinette table eating a leisurely breakfast of fried potatoes, sliced onion, toast and orange juice.
Yes, I was guilty. I forgot it was the day for the nursing home service. It was 15 minutes before 10 a.m. (the time for the service) and I was supposed to pick up some ladies. I was also the designated pianist.
My neglect was not only going to make me late, but also those I was picking up — and the pastor had to take over the piano. My forgetting hindered more than myself ... and not considering the nursing home residents who were looking forward to the music and singing.
Paul had problems with people forgetting. He told the Galatians he was amazed they “forgot” that they were called into the Grace of Christ (Galatians 1:6, 7 KJV). He asked them in Galatians 5:7: “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?”
Obedience is an action prompted by faith and believing. When there is no faith, there is no action. Knowledge brings responsibility to obey the truth.
Remember, I had a responsibility. But forgetfulness of that fact caused me to plan my day around myself — sleep late, lallygag around and cook those potatoes for breakfast. Then I would do the church bulletin — plenty of time.
The phone call jarred me to reality.
The Galatians needed to be jarred to reality. Paul was asking them, “How could you forget?” That forgetfulness would affect not only how they ran, their relations with one another, their works and bearing of fruit, but their attitude toward living and their desires, also.
Sometimes the only excuse for disobedience is a puny, “I forgot.” My dad told me (several times) “I forgot is worse than nothing.” What he was saying was, “It would be better for you to say nothing, than to make such a feeble excuse.” Of course, his take on an excuse was “what you say instead of telling the truth.”
Forgetting the Grace of Christ is unexcuseable. It’s only through recognizing Him that sin is brought to light in our lives that we can seek forgiveness and partake of His Grace.
And it is only through the Holy Spirit — acknowledging we are sinners — that we will seek Christ, who can change hearts and lives.
James 1:24 tells us about those who are hearers of the Word, but don’t obey. “For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.”
If there’s no doing of the Word, there is a lack of faith.
The children of Israel had a problem with forgetting. In 2 Chronicles 34:21, we read how the book of the law (which had been hidden and forgotten) was found by Hilkiah, the priest. It was delivered to King Josiah, who tore his clothes and wept when he read that the fathers “have not kept the word of the Lord, to do after all that is written in this book.”
He was jarred to reality. Realizing how serious this disobedience was, he called everyone together and read the book to them. Then he made a covenant to walk after the Lord, keep his commandments, his testimonies and statues “with all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant which are written in this book” (2 Chronicles 34:31).