"Forgetting What Is Behind"

 

Good Morning Friends

Today we will continue with our lessons in our series of "Forgetting What Is Behind". Today we will be in lesson 7 "Forgetting what is behind".  Most of us would agree that it seems impossible to "forget our past", to not remember the good or bad of our past experiences. But in our lesson in Philippians Paul will take us deeper into what it truly means to forget. Thanks you for joining me and I hope this will be a blessing to you. You can reach us at our website for more information about us and other offers...reachingthebroken.org..  or you can email me at deejohnston1@live.com

Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and streaming toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prizes for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14

Everyday when you drive in your car you face a big windscreen in front of you that allows you to look where you need to go. You also have a smaller rear view mirror that enables you to see what is coming up behind you. There is a reason why the rear view mirror is smaller than the front windscreen. While driving, you are to spend the majority of your time looking ahead through the front windscreen rather than looking behing through the small rear view mirror.

When it comes to our personal lives some of us have it the other way around. We spend far too much time looking out the rear view mirror at where we have been rather than looking ahead at where we are going. What about you?

Are your thoughts dominated by your past or is your thinking focused on the future? We all have something in our past that we could get discouraged by and allow to steal our joy but we must not allow our past to steal our future. Thank God for the success of the past and for giving us the grace to come through the difficult circumstances of the past but we must follow Paul’s example and forget what lies behind so we can strain forward to what lies ahead.

We are going to break down our Scripture Verse in Philippians 3:13-14 into 5 parts: Our first one is;

God has a goal in mind for our life… 

1.  First of all, Paul understood that the Lord took hold of his life with a goal in mind. 

 Paul says, “I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.”  The words I want you to see here are the words, “that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.”

 2.  Second, He wants us to be conformed to the likeness of his Son.  God’s desire is that we grow to be like Christ,

  Paul writes, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.  For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” Romans 8:28 Do you see God’s purpose in calling us?

3.   Third, It's important to realize that God's goal is not just to "get us in the door".  He is not looking to merely "save us", He is working to "transform us".  The Christian is one who is ever moving toward Christ-like-ness.  We should be making progress toward holiness.

4.   Fourth, it is important to realize that God has a job for us to do.  He has called us TO something.  We are a part of His plan.  God DOES have a plan for your life.  His plan will lead you to joy, fulfillment, contentment and eternal blessing.

We Have Not Arrived Yet

Paul not only recognizes that the Lord has a grand purpose for his life, but he also realizes that he has not yet arrived at that purpose.

It is easy at times to “get ahead of the Lord’s plan for us”. In fact, when things don’t seem to be happening as quickly as we would like we begin to second guess “has God forgotten” or better yet, “what have I done wrong” that God is not moving.

Paul realized that it would be God, not himself, that would fulfill the purpose in his life. All he needed to do was follow his voice and obey what He was told to do.

 Paul knows he is not what he should be.  He is aware of his faults and the areas where he still needs to grow.  The word for "perfect" also means "complete".  Paul recognizes that he is not finished yet.  Chuck Swindoll says it well, "God is seeking progress not perfection."

Spiritual Growth takes time.  As diligently as Paul worked at his faith, he still had not arrived.  Don't get discouraged . . . keep moving forward. Some conclude that they have “arrived” at where God wants them to be.  They have reached a certain point in their knowledge or experience and they conclude that they are mature and can stop working so hard.  But those who think this have a faulty view of their own situation.  They are looking only at the surface, God is concerned about the heart. 

We must measure ourselves by Christ.  He wants us to be pure in our actions, in our conversations, in our thinking, in our attitudes, in our relationships.  He wants us to love Him more than anything else.  He wants to be in the position of influence in every part of our life. If you understand the standard you will, like Paul, understand that you are not there yet.

We will stop here for today and finish up next week beginning with Don't live in the past. Have a great day and many blessings to you.

Dee