And it came to pass, when all the people had completely crossed over the Jordan, that the Lord spoke to Joshua, saying: "Take for yourselves twelve men from the people, one man from every tribe, and command them, saying, 'Take for yourselves twelve stones from here, out of the midst of the Jordan, from the place where the priests' feet stood firm. You shall carry them over with you and leave them in the lodging place where you lodge tonight.'"
A Family Memorial
The memory capacity of an ordinary human mind is astonishing. You may not consider yourself particularly good at remembering technical data, but think about how many faces you can recognize or how many names you can recall. Consider also how you are able to remember some past incident or how many words you can spell and define. Someone has estimated that in a lifetime, a brain can store one million billion "bits" of information. Yet how easy it is to forget the marvelous things that God does for us.
For that reason God commanded Joshua to select 12 men, one from each tribe, to pick up a stone from the dry riverbed and carry it to where they would lodge. These 12 stones became a reminder to the people of the miracle that the Lord performed for them. But this memorial was not for them alone. Joshua instructed the people, "When your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, 'What are these stones?' then you shall let your children know, saying, 'Israel crossed over this Jordan on dry land'" (4:21-22). These stones became a family memorial.
It's important for every family to have reminders of what the Lord has done for them. Perhaps you could keep a journal of God's blessings in your life. A friend of mine has a photo album that helps her and her family remember the Lord's goodness.
However you choose to do it, just do it. Begin today to build a family memorial to the Lord. Your grandchildren and great-grandchildren will thank you.