Are you living your Life in the Rearview Mirror

images-61The holidays were right around the corner and the memories were beginning to be made without me, as my family was already in Chicago waiting for my arrival. I was rushing around trying to get the office closed and get home so I could pack and head out of town to be on time for the family annual gathering.

Even though it was mind boggling because of everything that needed done, yet some how I had locked the office door and was now in my car driving away. Then out of nowhere came a thought like an enemy arrow that pierced my already tired mind, “I hadn’t turned off the lights in my office”. I began looking in my rearview mirror trying to see if I could tell if they were on or not. Needless to say, I


You cannot go forward as long as you’re looking behind you!


wasn’t looking forward any longer. It’s amazing how a person might think he could go forward safely and be looking in the rearview mirror. Well, it doesn’t work! Ahead of me was a line of cars waiting for a train to finish crossing the road. When I finally looked ahead, I immediately tried to swerve but ended up crashing into the stopped cars.

I learned a valuable lesson that day that has helped me throughout my life. You cannot go forward as long as you’re looking behind you! Paul says, in Phil 3:12-13, “I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead”. Paul exhorts the believers in Philippi to not look behind. They were like so many people in our day that are so fixed on the past that they are hindered from going forward in their lives.

Whether it was a bad decision when they were young, maybe an abortion, a bad marriage and act of violence or possible many different things. One thing for sure is that not dealing with the past will keep our eyes looking behind us and hinder us from going forward with our lives. In verse 14, Paul continues by saying, “I


Only when we have rightly dealt with the past can we face tomorrow with confidence and triumph.


press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” He is saying that he keeps his eyes on the things ahead and where God’s blessings abide. Paul pushed forward to achieve the very reason God had apprehended him. Unfortunately, many of us can’t go forward because our past failures are holding us down. But that is a plot of the enemy in your life: To make you dwell on your failures and not move on. He wants to keep you in bondage to your past so you are useless for what God has for you in the present.

How we deal with our disappointments will determine whether they destroy us or make us stronger. It’s natural to examine ourselves and deal with areas of our lives. (2 Cor 13:5) But, it is totally wrong to be held in bondage to our past. We must bring our failures (1 John 1:9-10) and successes before the Lord and ask Him to forgive where it’s needed and be Lord over even the things we have achieved success in. (2 Cor 10:5-6)

Only when we have rightly dealt with the past can we face tomorrow with confidence and triumph. We must be about His business. But, you can’t go forward by looking in the rearview mirror.

 

Thoughts to Ponder:

1.)    Do you have times when you are bombarded by things in your past? Or maybe you have a friend that seems to be in bondage to some events in their past? Explain?

2.)    Paul was accustom to the Greek athletic races and therefore used them to bring out what point in Phil 3:12-14 that applied to a believers life? Explain how 2 Cor 10:5-6 can help those who seem to always allow the past failures or successes to hinder what God may have for their present lives.

3.)    What things would you say to anyone that was living their life in bondage to  their past? What does 1 John 1:9-10 exhort those that are followers of Jesus?

 

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We can’t Just Sit Here until we Die

INDIA-SOCIETY         I remember while I was in junior high school, I tried out for the basketball team. Though I made the team, it was to my disappointment that I was only good enough to be on the B-team. The coach challenged us saying that if we worked hard in practice that we might get promoted up to the A-team. I took the challenge to heart and began to practice my hardest, only to find that I was still on the secondary team.   After several weeks had gone by, with no advancement, I began to let my disappointment get the best of me. I soon began to settle for my lot in life, so I thought, and got content with being on the B-team, not trying anymore to be promoted. I knew at least I would get a letter at the awards banquet for participating.

Paul let us know our journey in this life wasn’t going to be a cake walk. For he said in 2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” He let us know we would have to fight, signifying it was an aggressive


Why should we settle for anything less than God’s best?     (tweet)


action to achieve God’s plan for our life. When you are willing to settle for the good instead of going for the best, the good has become the enemy of the best   The church has settled for the good meetings and good conferences for too long. We have allowed ourselves to settle for the average growth rate and average impact instead of going for God’s best! God’s best is God’s outpouring of revival on his church. Why should we settle for anything less than God’s best? What would happen if the church would get sick of being complacent and satisfied and quit bowing down to the norm of our society? Let’s look at a story in 2 Kings 6: 24–29; 7: 1–8, where Syria laid siege to the city of Samaria. In the midst of devastation, the man of God speaks the word of the Lord, declaring that deliverance was at hand. Then the scripture zooms in on four lepers sitting outside the city gate, for the law commanded them to dwell alone and Continue reading