Once again I had the privilege to preach the mid-week service to my faithful congregation. I say privilege because anytime I preach is a privilege. Anyway, I love Wednesday night services. I know, our service is generally smaller on Wednesday nights. But that’s what I like about it. Last night was no exception, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
I preached a message from Isaiah 43:18-21, titled: The Past is Just That – the Past! I believe one of the greatest struggles for believers is dwelling in the past. I know, I have struggled at times with it, too. Too often, we are left bitter, discouraged or grieved over something that happened yesterday, last week, 5 years ago, whenever. Instead, God told His people Israel to not dwell on the former things, or consider the things of old. Because He would do a new thing.
It’s easy to want to look back, isn’t it? Certainly, we can learn from our mistakes. God grows us that way. However, if we spend too much time looking back and not forward, it can be dangerous. It’s kind of like plowing a field. If you look back, you won’t plow a very straight row. Or how about when you are driving down the road and you look in the mirror or turn to look at your cellphone. Next thing you know, your car is off the edge of the road. That’s what happens when we dwell in the past.
So, I encourgage you today to meditate on these words written by the Apostle Paul in Philippians 3:13-14: 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, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Don’t dwell on what cannot be changed. The past is just that – the past! Don’t worry about what tomorrow may bring. Instead, walk in the joy of the Lord today. Focus on Him and what He has for you today. Seek to glorify Him in all that you do today. After all, that is our purpose in life.