February 2018 – Month of Pressing Forward
……I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14
To achieve what God wants us to do in 2018, there are some things we must forget. Paul mentions “forgetting those things which are behind.” This phrase is in the present tense indicating that we are to keep on forgetting. This word “forgetting” does not mean obliterating the memories of the past, but a conscious refusal to let the things of the past consume our attention and hinder our spiritual growth. Forgetting the things behind does not mean erasing the sins of the past, it means to break the power and influence of the past by living for the future and not letting our weights of victories and failures slow us down.
In a race, the runner’s progress is hindered if he keeps looking back. The runner’s stride is broken; he can trip or lose his balance too. Looking back gets his focus off the finish line and on his opponent. This is what happens when we dwell on the success and failures of the past. We either rest on some accomplishments as though we have arrived, or else we live in a sagging spirit of regret over past failures. This kind of thinking hinders us from being what God wants us to be and doing what God’s will is for our lives. God wants us to forget and press onward with the determination that each day will find us more like Christ. Never look back on your yesterdays in such a way that it slows your progress.
This is exactly what the Israelites did in the book of Numbers. The Jews did not forget about the delicacies of the past and wanted to go back to the lifestyle they once had.
They failed to trust God with their present and future.
Numbers 11:5-6—… We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlic:
But now our soul is dried away: there is nothing at all, beside this manna, before our eyes.
Paul indicates his intensity to reach his goal for Christ, “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
Paul pressed after the church or persecuted Christians, and later he pressed, he earnestly, continually pursued toward the mark of God’s high calling. The Lord has a way of changing our goals, doesn’t He?
There are two extremes of pressing: 1) I must do it all, 2) God must do it all.
God wants us to be dependent upon Him for the things we cannot do for ourselves. We are to do our best and leave the rest up to God.
Paul was leaning forward and looking forward to being with the One who was watching over him.
Beloved, the Lord is our guard, watchman, protector, and guardian. He watches over us.
My brethren, please press forward, for to you this month, I decree that Forward ever, Backward never in Jesus name.
Welcome to the month of February.
Your in Christ,
Pastor (Dr.) Lillian Haastrup