Reading: Psalm 78: 1-4
Verse 1: “O my people, hear my teaching; listen to the words of my mouth”.
Today the psalmist urges us to listen and to remember. It begins with listening. We cannot just hear words but must really listen to the words and their meaning. This allows us to internalize and understand the words and how they apply to our lives and to our faith. Once done listening, we also must remember. The words cannot come in one ear and go out the other. To remember means to hold onto the words and the affect they have on our life and on our faith.
The psalmist is urging the people Israel to hold onto the teaching and to hold onto the “trustworthy deeds of the Lord”. In remembering “what our fathers have told us” we begin to build up a collective memory of what God has done for His people. In doing so, we build up a reservoir of strength to draw upon when we find ourselves in a time of trial or suffering. All those memories of God at work in the past give us a reassurance that we can trust God to be present in our current need.
But is is not all about taking in and holding on. We must also be a part of the telling. The psalmist reminds us that “we will not hide them from our children”. We must tell our children and the generations after them of the mighty works of God as well. We must pour into our children and into the future generations so that they too will “hear my teaching; listen to the words of my mouth”.
We each are a part of the coming and the going out of the faith. At times we must listen and absorb the stories of the faith – both those in the Bible and those experienced in life. At other times it must be our voices who pass along the Word and the stories that help others to find and grow in their faith. Each day may we be hearers as well as tellers, bringing the glory to God in all we do and say as we live out our lives of faith.