It felt like I was in class again as I listened to the first reading from Joshua (Joshua 24: 1-13) this morning at Mass. It was like the mini review that takes place at the beginning of the semester when last year's material is given in an overview. It was like looking at the "Cliff Notes" edition of salvation history. The People of Israel had "crossed over" and entered the Promised Land. Joshua called the entire people together and gave them a run down of God's working in their midst and on their behalf. The understanding was that they could not effectively move forward without recalling their history.
It is equally important for each of us to recall what has paved the way, what has gone before, in order to adequately move forward. Whether it is an examination of conscience at the end of a day, or a morning offering at the beginning, or a moment of quiet reflection during, these moments ground us in God's grace and lead us into his continued plan for us. Without that, we have "tunnel vision" and "react" rather than act with love and understanding and mercy.