In 1926, Dr. Carter G. Woodson initiated what we call today, Black History Month. He did so because he knew the value of preserving and celebrating the history and contributions of Black Americans. When people do not know their past, they find it difficult to function in the present, and they see little purpose in anticipating the future. That is why Moses urged his people to remember their history. As he spoke to the new generation of ex-slaves (Deuteronomy 4), he challenged them never to forget the day God met them at Mt Sinai. He said, “Be careful never to forget what you yourself have seen. Do not let the memories escape from your mind as long as you live!” Furthermore, he said, “Be sure to pass on your memories to your children and grandchildren.” Why did Moses urge his people to keep alive their past? Memories of God’s past blessings strengthen our faith to pursue God’s will today. They assure us that God is still able and reliable to assist us today. For that same reason, Jesus told us to remember Calvary—to recall the love God demonstrated when He permitted His Son to bear our sin in His own body on the tree. Jesus said, “Do this to remember me as often as you drink it.” As we recall and celebrate that past event of Calvary’s love, we should also renew our loyalty to God. We should pledge to love and serve God with all our hearts.
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