“I will remember the works of the LORD; surely I will remember thy wonders of old. I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings” (Psalm 77:11-12).
Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States that is observed each year on the last Monday in May. We set this day aside as a memorial to remember and honor those who have given their lives in the service of our country. We enjoy the freedoms we have today because of brave soldiers who were willing to lay down their lives for our country.
Originally called “Decoration Day,” Memorial Day can be traced back to a day in April1863 in Columbus, Mississippi. After decorating the graves of her two sons who served during the Civil War as Confederate soldiers, an elderly woman also decorated two mounds at the corner of the cemetery. When asked by an observer why she was decorating the graves of two Union soldiers, she reportedly replied, “I know they are Union soldiers, but somewhere in the North a mother or a young wife mourns for them, even as we do ours.” This dear lady and a few others set in motion what we know as Memorial Day.
Even as our minds call to remembrance the sacrifice of men and women who died in the service of our country, as Christians we think of the greatest sacrifice — that of our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who laid down His life for us that we might be saved. His death gives us the greatest freedom of all — freedom from sin and its penalty of eternal death.
From the verses listed above, we learn the importance of three things:
1. REMEMBER – “Remember the works of the LORD… thy wonders of old.”
All of the Lord’s works are wonderful. We think of the wonders of creation and the human body, and exclaim with David, “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well” (Psalm 139:14).
The work of God’s saving grace is wonderful! That God would love us while we were yet sinners and send His Son to be the satisfaction for our sins is wonderful! That He would draw us to Himself by His Word and His Spirit and adopt us into His family as His children upon our trusting in Christ is amazingly wonderful! Do you remember the day He saved you?
2. MEDITATE – “I will meditate also of all thy work.”
Meditation is reflection. How sweet to remember the works of God’s hands, and then to reflect upon His goodness, faithfulness and mercy. Meditation, as an old preacher put it, “chews the cud.” By means of reflection we are able to appreciate the blessings recalled by memory. It does very little good to remember unless recollection is followed by meditation.
David wrote, “When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches” (Psalm 63:6). It was by the exercise of both these faculties that the psalmist was able to praise God and rejoice in Him.
3. TALK – “And talk of thy doings.”
After remembering and meditating comes mentioning. The heart that is filled with the recollection of the mercies of God cannot help but let it overflow through the lips! It was the prayer of David, “That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works” (Psalm 26:7). Who have you told lately of the wonderful things God has done for you?
Psalm 77 is a psalm of consolation in the midst of trouble. Consolation comes from the remembrance of God’s wonderful works; it is increased by meditation; and it is strengthened by communication. Don’t forget to remember!