It’s a New Year! Forget the Past! Focus Forward!
Good-bye, 2020! Welcome, 2021! It has been said that for every ending there is a new beginning and to that, I say “GOD I thank ya!” I am SO thankful we can receive NEW strength, NEW grace, and NEW mercy from God for each NEW day! I really don’t know where I would be or what state of mind I would be in today had it not been for God’s grace and strength sustaining me in 2020. Can I get an Amen?
FORGETTING THE PAST
As I step with some pep into this new year, I am choosing to focus on the ONE thing the apostle Paul wrote about in Phil.3:14…“I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”
The Passion Translation says it like this: “I forget all of the past as I fasten my heart to the future instead. I run straight for the divine invitation of reaching the heavenly goal…..“
So often when we come upon a new year, we start setting new goals. Fitness goals. Financial goals. Relationship goals. Career goals. But Paul’s goal was to win a heavenly prize, eternal life. His goal was spiritual. And he encourages us to pursue this same goal with forward-focus, relentless passion, and reckless abandon (without care or regard for anything else). I am convinced that if I’m to become and do everything God has purposed for me to do and become, I have to forget the past. I have to stop looking back and longing for what was and has been. You know, “The good-ole days.”
I don’t know about you but this is easier said than done, right? Especially when what you had or experienced in the past was something good, meaningful, and enjoyable to you. A few years ago, I left some very close friends, a progressive and culturally diverse city and faith community that brought so much joy and meaning into my life.
But last year, God spoke to me about my continually looking back at the past, longing for what I once had. He spoke clearly to me and said “Don’t look back” (Genesis 19:17).
When we don’t understand why God has ended a particular relationship, job/career, or season in our lives that we enjoyed and thought was ‘supposed to be ‘THE PLAN’, we can find ourselves trying to hold on to those things because we fear for our future. We worry AND wonder “What’s next for me? Will the NEW THING in my future be as good as or better than what I had in the past? Y’all, this was me to the T!
New Year. New Hope. New Joy. New Expectancy.