The story of salvation is a story of remembering and forgetting. Deep within every one of us is an image that was lovingly placed there by the creative imagination of God. When He conceived of us, He imprinted us with an image that was like Jesus. Over time and because of selfish choices, that image became marred, broken, and covered. Mostly, it is buried deep under the consequences of selfishness that plagues our human condition. Even among the saintliest church goers and church leaders there is a battle when it comes to choosing. The desire to act in a way that is purely driven by a Kingdom value often gets sidetracked or warped by the subtle, inconspicuous selfish agenda that keeps leaking into behavior from a defensive self.
Under the prevenient work that God does in us that image buried deep within begins to awaken. Flashes of memory begin to return. In our better moments those “flashbacks” even cause us to make some pretty amazing choices. Perhaps not consistently, but enough to remind us that deep within lies the image of a holy God. And when surrendered to the work of Christ and the influence of the Holy Spirit, suddenly that image becomes more clear and begins to take over in the daily walk of navigating our days and relationships.
Over time and with daily release to the influence of that Holy Spirit, we begin to remember who we were created to be. The image imprinted upon us begins to emerge by the work of Christ. And we begin to reflect the image of God in ways we never thought possible. Choices, actions, priorities, conversations, relationships are all affected as we begin to remember God’s vision for us.
With the remembering comes the forgetting. As we remember our source in God, we begin to forget the lure of our baser nature. We begin to forget why our own path of selfishness was so important and what it really offered that seemed so meaningful. The forgetting begins to wash away the defensive self that for so long commanded our will. At first the battle between remembering and forgetting is a tough one. Something familiar about our selfishness lingers. Yet the image of Jesus, the archetype of our calling, is so magnetic that the things of this earth grow dim. And gradually the remembering overshadows the forgetting – until we no longer really care about what we have forgotten!