Written by His Grace,

Kevin K. O’Connor 

Sep. 15, 2004

 

Main thought: A challenge for us to examine how we walk our walk in this temporary existence.

 

GOING FORWARD OR BACKWARD?

 

Philippians 3:13 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, (Whole Chapter: Philippians 3 In context: Philippians 3:12-14)

 

Luke 9:62 Jesus replied, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God." (Whole Chapter: Luke 9 In context: Luke 9:61-63)

 

Thank our Lord for our past for if it wasn’t there, we wouldn’t be here today. But, just like a GPS (Global Positioning System), which needs a single point of reference to be able to give us the multitude of directions to get to our destination, so we should view our life. In other words, we all have a past from which we should be growing from and not living in. There are those who do not want to even consider the past which is not right for that is denying who we were and what we’ve done which in many respects determine who we are today so that we can learn from that and become who we are meant to be tomorrow. Then there are those who only want to live in the past, which is destructive also, for Christ is coming back for overcomers and overcomers don’t live in the past. 

 

It seems that people who are bitter are those who refuse to let go of the past and move into growth as to where they should be. Then there are those who are carefree who refuse to look at the past and go bumping along without looking at the consequences of their actions and they too will not find themselves maturing into the men and women God desires them to be.

 

Our God desire us to be going forward but at the same time not forgetting where we’ve come from so that we will not continue falling into the pitfalls of yesterday. The following is where He expresses His sorrow for our lack of remembering; Psalm 78:42 They did not remember his power- the day he redeemed them from the oppressor, (Whole Chapter: Psalm 78 In context: Psalm 78:41-43) And again He warns us of the importance of remembering our own weaknesses; Deuteronomy 9:7 Remember this and never forget how you provoked the LORD your God to anger in the desert. From the day you left Egypt until you arrived here, you have been rebellious against the LORD . (Whole Chapter: Deuteronomy 9 In context: Deuteronomy 9:6-8)

 

I have experienced heart wrenching pain. I know what it is like to hope that each car coming your way would drift over into your lane and put you out of your misery. But, God reached into that pain and sorrow and gave me a beam of light that my heart heard and hung onto which lifted me from that pit of sorrow and suffering; Psalm 40:2 He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. (Whole Chapter: Psalm 40 In context: Psalm 40:1-3) That beam of Light is His Word. The Word He gave me is Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Whole Chapter: Psalm 37 In context: Psalm 37:3-5) Boy! did my heart hurt badly and how it needed to be made whole. And as soon as my weary broken heart heard His Word, life began to take root. And as I began to live what He had spoken into my sorrowful heart, the Life continued to grow and eventually filled the void that sorrow had produced. Darkness cannot dwell where light exists and God’s Word is Light! John 1:1-5 1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning. 3Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood[1] it. What nourishes the Word of God to blossom and grow within our hearts so that the void will be overcome? First, being honest with one another, God, and ourselves. Not trying to hide the fact that we are wicked and that all of our own ways are sinful and selfish. Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. (Whole Chapter: Isaiah 64 In context: Isaiah 64:5-7)  Next, we need to realize that the answer to overcome our own weaknesses does not come from within ourselves but from within Him. Isaiah 45:9 "Woe to him who quarrels with his Maker, to him who is but a potsherd among the potsherds on the ground. Does the clay say to the potter, 'What are you making?' Does your work say, 'He has no hands'? (Whole Chapter: Isaiah 45 In context: Isaiah 45:8-10) Isaiah 64:8 Yet, O LORD , you are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand. (Whole Chapter: Isaiah 64 In context: Isaiah 64:7-9) Third, realize that God is the One who has ultimate power and authority over all things Who will only act on behalf of those who have Faith in Who He is and What He is able to do. Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. (Whole Chapter: Hebrews 11 In context: Hebrews 11:5-7) As these traits become dominant in our lives, the Word of God will have the soil in which to take hold and grow. The most beautiful seed in the world that produces the most delicious fruit of all time does no good whatsoever if the soil in which it is planted is shallow and lifeless.

The River of Life that we’re all in is flowing powerfully in the realms of the physical because that is where we live. Thus, we’re either moving against the flow and growing into the image of Christ our King or we’re not and thus being moved along by the world’s influences. There is a joy in victory that only those who have taken up arms can attest to.  We were made in the image of God and something about us needs to be challenged and put to the test. God is Living and Active and so should we be. Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-­edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Whole Chapter: Hebrews 4 In context: Hebrews 4:11-13) Trials and tests happen, that is this life. But, what is not of this life is an attitude that we were not meant for this world and this world alone. God Bless every soul who can see that we were meant for eternity and so need the Eternal God to instruct us in the ways of Life everlasting. God bless every life that refuses the way of comfort and ease by going with the flow but who rises to the challenge of growing into the image Christ Who overcame the world. John 16:33 "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." (Whole Chapter: John 16 In context: John 16:32-34) and some more great verses are  1 John 5:4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. (Whole Chapter: 1 John 5 In context: 1 John 5:3-5) and 1 John 5:5 Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God. (Whole Chapter: 1 John 5 In context: 1 John 5:4-6)

Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your very Heart, Jesus, into this world! Lord Jesus, Thank You for being the express image of Your Father’s heart and overcoming all things for us. Teach us how to sit at Your feet and learn from You so that we may live with You through all eternity. In Jesus Glorious, Eternal Name, Amen.

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