“Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:13-14)
Happy New Year! I find this verse so timely as we find ourselves in 2016.
Two words stand out from these beautiful words from St. Paul which give us two valuable actions for change: Forgetting what lies behind and reaching Forward to what lies ahead.
The past is over but sometimes we can find ourselves stuck in it. I understand this very much because I used to make it my home too. One day, God asked me to move to a new address, to Freedom Street where love and joy were found.
I had to leave the past behind, to let go and allow God to heal it. Today, with His grace, I am free from the shackles of the past. He wants the same for you too.
St. Paul teaches us to forget what lies behind. Our past sins, negative memories, circumstances that hurt us, people who’ve caused us pain, those things we need to surrender and forgive, our past regrets, mistakes and failures.
We forget the past except for valuable lessons learned which would help us build a better future.
This year, we turn our heads and face forward.
Where exactly should we be going? St. Paul tells us to press on toward the goal. In other words, to focus. You cannot move towards any goal or reach it, if you’re not even looking at it or are always distracted. What are you eyeing on this year? Will it bring you closer to your true home?
St. Paul encourages us to press on toward the goal.
We are headed toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God. Where is that? Heaven. What will lead us to heaven? Love. Who will lead us there? Jesus.
Amidst the many goals we have set for ourselves this year, let us aim for the ultimate prize, play to win for the things that what will last forever.
This year we are encouraged to leave the past behind because God’s plans for our future is filled with hope (Jeremiah 29:11).
We may not be there yet but thank God that we are not who we used to be. Thank God for making all things new.
This year, let’s keep moving forward! May you press on toward the goal of your upward call. May you follow the path that leads you to the ultimate prize.
In the end, it’s the only thing that matters.
Pearl of Truth
“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.” (1 Cor 9:25)