Do You Have Spiritual Alzheimer's?

For the life of me, I couldn’t remember where I’d put the stamped envelopes my husband asked me to address. “They were right here on the counter,” I said in frustration, “but I moved them when I cleaned before the party.” 

And that check. Did I deposit it or just think about depositing it? 

And how many times have I gone to the back of the house to get something only to forget what I went there to get? 

I see you nodding your head, because, if you’re busy and over 40, you’ve done the same things. We’re overextended and trying to do too many things at once. 

And it’s not a new problem. My grandmother used to say, “I’d forget my head if it wasn’t sewn on.” I know the feeling. 

In an article titled “10 Early Signs of Alzheimers,” The Alzheimer’s Association states, “One of the most common signs of Alzheimer's is memory loss, especially forgetting recently learned information. Others include forgetting important dates or events; asking for the same information over and over; increasingly needing to rely on memory aids (e.g., reminder notes or electronic devices) or family members for things they used to handle on their own.” 

Thankfully, the other nine signs are not a regular part of my life . . . at least I don’t remember that they are. . . . 

I don’t have physical Alzheimer’s, but I am often plagued with SPIRITUAL Alzheimer’s. I suspect you might be, too. 

I forget how God saved me, and how he transforms me. 

I forget the thousand prayers God has answered. I forget how, for over 30 years, God has met my family’s needs. 

I forget how God provided scholarships, grants, and anonymous donors to provide for four college educations. 

I forget how God has protected my family in cars, planes, and trains. In the United States and out of the United States. On land, on sea, and in the air. 

I forget how God has been with us as we rejoiced at the birth of babies and wept at the death of saints. 

Spiritual Alzheimer’s—do you have it, too? 

People with physical Alzheimer’s are fearful and anxious. They question their caregivers and struggle with trust. They fail to seek help and often panic in uncertain situations. People with spiritual Alzheimer’s are also fearful and anxious. We question our Father and struggle to trust him. We fail to come to him for help and instead panic when new challenges enter our lives. 

Perhaps this is why, every year at Passover, for thousands of years, Jewish fathers have retold the story of God’s deliverance, care, and provision for the children of Israel. 

Remember well what the LORD your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt,” Moses reminded the Israelites. 

“You saw with your own eyes the great trials, the miraculous signs and wonders, the mighty hand and outstretched arm, with which the LORD your God brought you out” (Deut. 7:18-19). 

“Remember well.”

Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years” (8:2).

“Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God . . . Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. 

“He led you through the vast and dreadful desert, that thirsty and waterless land, with its venomous snakes and scorpions. He brought you water out of hard rock. He gave you manna to eat in the desert, something your fathers had never known, to humble and to test you so that in the end it might go well with you. You may say to yourself, ‘My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.’ 

But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant” (12-18). 

If you’re struggling with uncertainty and fear today, perhaps you’re suffering from spiritual Alzheimer’s. 

I have good news for you. 

There is a cure: Remember what the Lord your God has done for you. 

Would you like to remember well what the Lord has done for you? Why not begin by leaving a comment? Maybe your comment will help someone else remember.

Upcoming Event:
Praying with Power Women's Conference May 9, 2015
Hosted by Good Shepherd UM Parish in Brookville, PA

Session 1: Why Pray?
If God's going to do what God's going to do, why bother praying? Does it really work? The answer is YES, and this session will show you why.
Session 2: How to Pray
If you find yourself bored, distracted, or repetitive when you pray, you'll love creating your own personalized prayer journal.
Session 3: What to Pray
This session will show you how to discover God's dreams, desires, and power for your life.
Session 4: What Happens When We Pray
Is your spiritual life dull, dry, and lacking excitement? This session will show you how prayer can energize your faith and help you fall more in love with God.

For more information or to register, contact Lori Henderson ( or Kathy Shaffer (

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  1. Beautiful thoughts! I have owned my own business of printing a monthly Christian newspaper, for almost 7 years. I took over the newspaper in the fall of Oct. 2008, right when the financial crisis hit and we lost many subscribers and advertisers. Finances were tight and whether or not enough there would be enough money to pay the bills was uncertain every month. I spent endless hours worrying and praying. God always provided, sometimes just in time, and sometimes just enough money, but He always provided. It became a habit for me to worry about money...but after a few years (I'm a slow learner!) I realized that God had continue to provide finances consistently. I still, sometimes, reflexively worry when I get a cancellation or the checkbook is very low. However, I"ve tried to just as reflexively Remember reflexively what God has done for me, every single month, for almost 7 years. Thank You, Lord. (

    1. Shelly,
      Your testimony made me say YES! It's a beautiful tribute to God's faithfulness, and I'm so glad you shared it here. May God grant you another 7 years and beyond for his glory!

  2. At Christmas I gave our family a 10,000 Reasons notebook (titled from the song) so that we can keep a record of all the things God has done for us and remember to praise Him for those things--good and bad. The "bad" things in life so often draw us closer to our Father and our dependence on Him.

  3. I wouldn't say I forget, but I do have to remind myself that if God came through for me on those occasions, I don't have to fear the outcome of trials I might be going through currently. Great post!

  4. A scrapbook of photos and lots of journaling can document your spiritual journey and leave a heritage of God's faithfulness.

  5. My children are my greatest reminder of how God has blessed me and how he continues to provide...always!

  6. My children are my greatest reminder of how God has blessed me and how he continues to provide...always!

  7. This is just so true in my life. I tend to forget all of the many, many ways that God has blessed me and continues to bless me, and I tend to focus on the few things He is still in the process of bringing to fruition in my life. Spot on! God bless you, Lori, as you continue to do His work. :)

    1. Thank you, Amanda! Thanks for stopping by.

  8. I forget all the time. I think that's part of why we're supposed to read our Bible everyday, for the reminder. ;)

  9. Oh yes! In spite of two bible study groups I still find myself bring forgetful.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  10. You are so right. I need a set of memorial stones that I trip over every day :) What a wonderful role for the body of Christ to keep us focused in ALL He has done for us.

  11. I need to build an altar to remember

  12. Yes, you diagnosed me well. This post reminded me of a passage I wrote in Seeing Through the Lies: Unmasking the Myths Women Believe. It's in Revelation 2 where Jesus is to the church at Ephesus, and Jesus is essentially saying that: 1)They needed to remember what God had done for them. 2)They needed to repent from what they had done to God. And 3)They needed to repeat the things He wanted them to do again. Oh, if only I would remember those things!

  13. It is so easy to forget how great and wonderful God is. When bad things happen, Ibeg for help but seem to forget when things are good. I go about day to day and just take it for granted. Your post was a big wakeup call for me.

    1. I was preaching to myself, Tallulah, but am humbled that God would use "my" lesson to challenge you as well. We'll be thankful together, yes?

  14. Sometimes I do have Spiritual Alzheimers. I remember Him in the bad times but daily I take all the blessings for granted.
    Sherri J

    1. Oh, that our memories of our blessings would be as long as our list of doubts! Thanks so much for chiming in.

  15. What a great post. So often, we only pray when we want something. You are so right!

  16. Yes! I have to say, all these replies are also great ways to remember what God has done for us. I like to coin the phrase that God has a "track record of faithfulness" for our family, and use it often when I'm praying and believing Him for something new.

  17. Yes! All these replies are great ways to remember what God has done. I like to use the phrase that we have a "track record of His faithfulness" to my family when I pray and believe him for something new.

  18. Remembering how He filled a stewpot in Victor, CO so that it fed many more quest than expected. Looking forward to seeing how He will provide for my needs in the coming year.

    1. Oh, Cora, I think I have a matching stew pot. Over and over again. In fact, I wrote a post for next week's blog that describes God as "helping us stretch out money so far George Washington looks like he has a facelift." May he bless you and provide for you "exceedingly, abundantly, above all you could ever ask for or imagine."