‘Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.’ Philippians 3:13 NLT
There are things inside you that must be dealt with before you can move ahead. Every experience you’ve had from birth until the present moment has helped shape who you are. The things that happen to you, good and bad, are instrumental in determining how you’ll act and react for the rest of your life.
Paul talks about ‘forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.’ You ask, ‘What did Paul have to forget?’ A lot! Paul was there, looking on with approval, when Stephen, the first Christian martyr, was stoned to death. Before he met Christ on the Damascus Road, Paul routinely imprisoned and put Christians to death. The fact is, if he hadn’t overcome his past, he would never have written half the New Testament and helped establish a church that would last two millennia. Was Paul perfect? Not even close! That’s why he said: ‘I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ saved me for and wants me to be… I am still not all that I should be but I am bringing all my energies to bear on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God is calling us up to Heaven because of what Christ Jesus did for us.’ (Philippians 3:12–14 TLB)
The only place the past can live is in your memory; and the only power it has over you is the power you give it. So the word for you today is: Start looking forward.