“Nurtured memories shape present realities and determine future destinies.” (Jerry Boykin, Stu Weber) The kind of memory you have will determine the kind of life you live. We must be able to place what we are going through in a context more reliable than our current feelings and emotions. If we fail to develop a memory of how God works in the lives of His people; people often thought of as the least, the last, the lonely, the losers … we will accept self-imposed limitations. Don’t accept self-imposed limitations. If your interactions with God are insufficient to give you a robust memory bank to draw on, then there are ample stories from the Bible of how God interacted with His people and the result was a passion, vitality, energy, and resolve far beyond what would have been the case if these people had lived accepting self-imposed limitations. Consider Caleb. Caleb, along with Joshua, recommended that the tribes of Israel go in and take possession of the Promised Land. Ten other spies were dead set against it. The ten accepted self-imposed limitations, making the excuse that their adversity was too much. They chose to characterize what was against them as too much for them. Where was God in such reasoning? Joshua 14 catches up with Caleb many years after that failed first attempt to enter the Promised Land. By this time, the land is almost completely settled by the Israelites, except for one last, most difficult area. In preparing for the next day’s battle, here is what Caleb says to Joshua, “Now then just as the Lord promised (there it is, the evidence of a memory shaped by God’s faithfulness) He has kept me alive for forty-five years ... So here I am today, eighty-five years old! I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out…” (Joshua 14:10,11) Do you see what happens when your memory works like it should? Because Caleb had a memory shaped by God’s promises, he was able to tap into a strength that lasted even through the exertions of almost constant battle, spread over many years. You can do more than you think you can. A memory tied to the ways God works, even in people like us, is a deep well to draw from, and it will inspire you as nothing else can. This is how we raise the bar on our discipleship.