One of the hardest things in life is to forget. Especially dealing with past hurts, pains and memories that is. Sometimes it’s easy to forget to schedule meetings, people’s names, friend’s birthdays, or who you needed to call back. I am not talking about those things. I am talking about things we have been carrying near and dear to our hearts. I want to bring up a scripture by our dear brother Paul. In Philippians 3:13 Paul says this: “Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead.”
Notice Paul says, “forgetting.” The “ing” at the end of “forget” tells me that the forgetting is in process. It’s not saying I forgot all at once. Paul is saying, “look, there are some things from my past that I am not well pleased with. There are some decisions that were made that I am not proud of. There are some things, which are in the process of being let go.” The process of forgetting is a patient process. One in which many do not like to go through.
What I have realize is this. There are some things from our past that we tend to carry along with us for way too long. There are some things from our past always trying to sneak back up on us and if we allow it to, it will. Many times we tell ourselves, “I am over this, or that doesn’t bother me anymore,” but the moment something comes up from the past we respond in the same manner we use to respond.
In the action of moving forward one must take their eyes off of what’s behind. How can one see what’s ahead by looking at what’s behind? It is nearly impossible. Eventually you will have to look ahead to see where you are going and I believe this is what Paul is getting at as he finishes the rest of the scripture in verse 13. He goes on to say, “and reaching forward to those things which are ahead.”
If you know like I know reaching towards anything requires effort. My friend, it is going to take some effort for you to move ahead and let go of what’s behind. One of my favorite scriptures in the Bible and a very impacting scripture is found in 2 Corinthians 5:17. It says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
When you became new in Christ, ALL of those old things passed away. In other words they died! There is a new you! Christ has forgiven you. Now it’s time for you to do your part and make sure those things continue to stay dead. Your life is now new. As you continue to grow closer to Christ, Christ will empower you and you will begin to grow farther away from what’s in your past. Becoming new in Christ gives us a renewed heart, mind and spirit, and this leads to forgetting all that’s behind just like Christ does with our past.
My dear friend in Christ, be encouraged. God is not done with you. He loves you and he is developing your character. We are all a work in progress. Keep on holding on. God’s got you!
James 1: 2-4 – “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”