Memories. Precious memories. People, events, sights and sounds flood into view as we think of happy days and happy places.

God has given us the ability to remember--the good or the bad. It's significant that the bad events seem to fade faster and the good events gather lustre. How often do we hear about the good old days?

I recall, as a lad in Australia, attending Anzac Day memorial services honouring war heroes and the fallen, in the cause of patriotism. Hymns that the band would play often come to mind: "Lest We Forget" and "O God, Our Help in Ages Past."

Memories of the past are essential for effective living. Moments of parental love, family fellowship, church, and achievements at school and work are lights along the highway of life.

How wonderful when we can remember times of renewal and courage with a consciousness of God's presence and direction in our lives. It's important to recall occasions of deliverance from some dire catastrophe--a close call or near miss.

Counting one's blessings is a part of memories. We can keep rushing into the future without taking time to recall and say thank you to loved ones and to God. But these are the things that enrich our lives.

It's easy to forget what we should remember. Remembering and forgetting go hand in hand in a world of good and evil, love and hate.

We live in a time when our minds are barraged with an avalanche of worthless and transient messages. It's refreshing to stop and remember the path we have walked. The enemy of God doesn't want us to take time to meditate on genuine goodness, but here is our chance to make memory work for us in effective decisions. We can avoid the confusion by saying to God, as Jesus did, "I want your will, not mine" (Luke 22:42).

Memories. Precious memories of forgiveness, care and love will help us go forward remembering Him who is our life, our hope, our salvation and our soon-coming King. We go forth with joy, rejoicing in His wonderful name and in the blessed hope of His soon return. May my tongue stick to the roof of my mouth if I fail to remember you, if I don't make Jerusalem my highest joy. Psalm 137:6. Ernest H J Steed is an Australian who has retired in the United States after working in the South Pacific Division and the General Conference in the area of health and temperance.