Whenever the LORD raised up a judge for them, he was with the judge and saved them out of the hands of their enemies as long as the judge lived; for the LORD had compassion on them as they groaned under those who oppressed and afflicted them. But when the judge died, the people returned to ways even more corrupt than those of their fathers, following other gods and serving and worshiping them. They refused to give up their evil practices and stubborn ways.
When we read the Bible, it is easy to throw up our hands and wonder how the people could be so stupid. How could the Israelites fall into idolatry again when they had just been rescued from the consequences of it? How could the people be so blind as to not see Jesus as the Messiah? How could anyone forget the miracles of God?
But how often do we forget the things that God has done for us? There are times when we don’t know how we’re going to pay the bills in a month and we get an unexpected check or a bill turns out to not be as high as we expected. And the next time bills are due we fret once again. Or what about the health problem that we or a family member has to endure? We often forget God’s faithfulness to us in the past in favor of the problem before us.
How do we avoid the cycle of forgetfulness? Be an optimist. Sure, times may be difficult but remember back to when God saw you through a similar problem. Odds are God has helped you survive even bigger problems before so this keeps things in perspective.
Even if you’ve never faced a similar problem or one as big your current crisis, remembering that God has been faithful to you in the past will help build faith for the future. Even in the midst of all their sin, God didn’t abandon the Israelites when they cried out for help, He won’t abandon us today either.