“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you” (Jesus, in John 14:26).
This has been a week to remember. Or maybe to forget! In the middle of a kitchen remodel, the noise and chaos of the handyman’s brick-smashing and nail-pounding gave me one migraine after another. A flurry of business emails that needed immediate response made me realize that my smartphone had slowed down to the pace of a snail stuck in a trail of molasses on a tar-baked road mid-sweltering day in July.
So a quick trip to my phone carrier store, and a conversation with a ten-year veteran techie later, I was armed with what sounded like good advice: upload my phone data to the cloud, delete the files, reset the phone to factory settings, and then restore its apps. He assured me that that my emails, photos, and audio files would be backed up in the process.
So I took the steps. Then I restarted my phone. The emails and photos popped right up. Where are my audio files? I wondered, a sinking feeling slamming into the pit of my stomach.
To my dismay, I found out that the voice recorder app I’d used was kept in a separate kind of file that could not be saved to the cloud. It was completely wiped out. Unrecoverable. Noooo!
I had probably two years worth of prophetic words, worship, spontaneous songs, and sounds of nature on those files. I sobbed for hours. I’d set out to back up the files. But instead, they were completely deleted. I was angry with myself for not uploading the files elsewhere. My inward-directed anger was overwhelming. So was the grief that it was all gone.
I recognize that I can remain in the place of Oh, man! I’m so furious, I’m sick! Or I can get another thought. Deep inside me is a lie that says every one of those audio recordings contains my life. They were part of me, part of my God-encounters, God-promises, and fresh songs spoken and prayed over me, now lost.
Now I’m forced to start over. Here’s a blank slate. An empty screen for the Holy Spirit to co-create on. A new microphone for the Holy Spirit to breathe into. Songs to be written. New prophetic words to be spoken. Uncharted atmospheres to shift.
Am I happy to have lost all the files? Sorry, but keepin’ it real, nope! I’m still in tears over the whole thing as I write tonight. But it is better to have prayed and lost, than never to have prophesied at all. Even as I type these words, I realize the need to forgive myself for the simple but costly error.
So I’m entertaining the thought that maybe, just maybe, the Holy Spirit, your Co-Co and mine, will teach all things and bring to remembrance all in Jesus needed to be remembered—past, present and future. And that will be enough. Because God can make all grace abound to you and me, so that having enough in everything, always, we can abound in every good work (2 Corinthians 9:8).
Have you ever lost an important memory, like a photo or audio file that you couldn’t retrieve? What helped you frame the loss? (Hey, help me reframe mine!)