My father had Dementia. It eventually took his life a little over a year ago. Before the disease, my dad was a strong, smart and loving man. He had his own engineering firm for many years. Once he retired from business he went into ministry full time. He was a pastor of a church for several years before retiring completely. It is so difficult to watch a family member slowly lose the ability to do even a simple task. We were blessed in the fact that dad never forgot us. Even towards the end, he would smile when you would come into the room and give you a thumbs up when he could no longer speak. He would wink at my mom to show his love for her when he could no longer find the right words. Dementia is a horrible disease. If you have someone in your life with the disease, I pray the Lord’s comfort and strength for you.
I think it would be awful to slowly lose our memories. The childhood memories of playing with friends, going to school, your first kiss, your wedding and the birth of your children would all be gone by the late stages of the diseases. Memories are such an important part of who we are and what we have done in life. But along with the loss of all our good memories, the disease also erases all the bad memories. The memories of the bad situations, unemployment, financial struggles , and death of our loves ones are no longer there either. I guess that is the one small positive I can find in dealing with dementia.
We all forget things, especially as we get older. Did you know that Jesus also forgets? Jesus forgets about our sins once we confess Him as our Lord and ask for His forgiveness. Once we are forgiven, then He forgets as seen in the verses below:
Isaiah 43:25 “”I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.”
Psalm 103:12 “as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.”
It use to puzzle me how Jesus could forget anything until I watch my dad’s dementia progress. I started to realize that Jesus’ thoughts on my sins is like my dad’s memories, gone for good. They do not remain in His memory bank. Unlike dementia, Jesus chooses not to remember our sins because He loves us so much. What a blessing to us. Coming to this understanding was something good I could take away from this dreaded aliment that stole my dad. Even at such difficult times, God can teach us something. What a beautiful reminder of how are past sins are never, ever remembered again. I am so thankful that God has decided to forget them all.
You too can have your sins forgiven and forgotten. A good starting point is to pray the prayer of forgiveness used by King David and found in the Bible in Psalm 51:
1 Be merciful to me, O God,
because of your constant love.
Because of your great mercy
wipe away my sins!
2 Wash away all my evil
and make me clean from my sin!
3 I recognize my faults;
I am always conscious of my sins.
4 I have sinned against you—only against you—
and done what you consider evil.
So you are right in judging me;
you are justified in condemning me.
5 I have been evil from the day I was born;
from the time I was conceived, I have been sinful.
6 Sincerity and truth are what you require;
fill my mind with your wisdom.
7 Remove my sin, and I will be clean;
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear the sounds of joy and gladness;
and though you have crushed me and broken me,
I will be happy once again.
9 Close your eyes to my sins
and wipe out all my evil.
May the Lord Bless you and keep you.
Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”