Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Memory Lapse  

A recent incident reminds me why we are exhorted in Scripture to guard our hearts. From my experience, one reason for that commandment is because our memory is so powerful. It seems that once an image has entered into our memory it will remain there only to crop up at another time. For those things which are evil, it seems especially important not to let these images become ingrained in our memories:

I was at the supermarket for a somewhat late night visit to pick up a few odds and ends. (We are definitely not the shop-once-a-week types. Instead, we make numerous trips to the grocery store during the week to pick up a few items at a time. We tried the once-a-week to the store trip; it just did not seem to work too well for us. I think it is because when we tried we immediately set in on eating everything we had just gotten, and the whole idea of shopping for several days fell apart when all the food which was supposed to last about a week was gone within about a day and half.) As I stood in the line to check out, I picked up a news magazine.

I definitely sensed that I should just put it down and not bother to look at the magazine. In retrospect, this "sense" was clearly from the Holy Spirit. However, I did not heed the warning, and I proceeded to flip through the magazine. I do not think it was the first thing I saw, but soon after opening the magazine I turned to an article about some criminal of whom I had never heard. Unfortunately, my eyes fell on the magazine's description of this guy's method of committing crimes. I will not repeat it here, but suffice to say it was absolutely heinous and beyond my comprehension. Now there it was lodged in my memory.

I put down the magazine, upset that I had failed to listen to the hint not to pick it up, but now it was too late. That evil description was in my brain, and although I was able to think of other things, but as thoughts do, the thought of what this guy had done came to my mind through my memory several times over the next few days. If nothing else, it was a waste of time to have to put out of my mind some thought that could have been avoided.

I have no need to know about this kind of evil. It really is of no use to me, and I am very sorry that I put the idea into my brain. My brain was far better off before it knew that someone had even contemplated what this guy did, much less carryed it out. The point is that I did not guard my heart, and I let in trash which, unless God erases from my memory, is there to stay. I do not fault the magazine per se. The blame rests with me. I was warned, but I failed to heed the warning.

Posted by David at 5:00 AM  |  Comments (0)  | 


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