I watched an old movie classic from the 1940s a few nights ago, Random Harvest, starring Ronald Coleman and Greer Garson. Beautiful film; never saw it before.
A soldier, Charles Ranier, who’s lost his memory in the 1st World War, is saved by Paula, a lovely woman who befriends him, then marries him and finally pursues him after he regains his memory following a street accident in Liverpool three years later.
Traumatized by war, Charles suffers from forgetfulness. Even though he regains his memory and finds his birth family and becomes a successful businessman and politician, there are vital parts of his life he can’t remember.
Only gradually does he regain those lost important memories. Paula, who knows those years and the love he found there, is a quiet patient presence, gently prodding him to remember.
Forgetfulness is a common subject in the history of spirituality. Often enough, the Old Testament comments on the times God’s people forget their God and his ways, traumatized by life good and bad. But God does not forget us. He remembers and reminds and restores our forgotten life.
“Remember” we often say in our prayer. “Remember us, O Lord.” “Be patient with us, O Lord.”Unless you remind us we cannot remember.