Let Go To Receive

13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. 16 Only let us hold true to what we have attained. ~ Philippians 3:13–16

Paul said, this one thing I do: I am forgetting everything that has happened to me. All my missed opportunities. All my failures. All my broken dreams. All my hurts. All my pain. All the bad things that have happened to me. Every disappointment. And every teardrop that fell. I’m forgetting all those things, and I’m pressing on to the good things that God has ahead for me. I’m looking forward, not backward.

Is there anything in your past that is worth holding on to? What I mean is this. Is there anything in your past that is worth more than what God has in front of you? What He has in store for us in eternity? I understand that there are some hurts that seem hard to let go of. Maybe a nagging pain when the face of that someone who has done you wrong came into your mind. Or maybe you endured a painful divorce. Or maybe someone willfully slandered you. Maybe someone you cared for betrayed your trust. Or your promotion went to someone way less deserving.

But I want you to know it is not worth holding on to. Now what I want you to do is to symbolically take those thoughts out of your head and crush them. Roll them up in a wad and toss them to one side. Do not look at where it lands because where it lands is where it will stay, and the Holy Spirit will clean up the rest.

You are now forgetting that which is behind you, and you are now looking forward to what is ahead of you. Good things. Bright things. God-centered things.

I want you to make a commitment now that your past will no longer define who you are in Christ. No longer will your past keep you from achieving. No longer will past failures keep you from trying. No longer will the taunts of your past depress you. No longer will whisperings behind your back sidetrack you. No longer will someone else’s carelessly thrown words knock you down. No longer will fear and doubt paralyze you. No longer will popular culture hold you back. No longer will criticisms trip you up. No longer will someone else’s image of you define who you are.

Because no longer will you put the power over your joy, your peace, your life in someone else’s hands. No longer will you let someone else have that kind of power over you to determine these for you. You are a child of God, and it is God who defines who you are. You are blessed and highly favored. God is for you, and He worketh all things to your good. This will be your best year yet. Believe it. Live it.

LORD God, my past is holding me back, so I give it to You. I understand that I can’t receive the good future. You have in store for me if I’m holding on to my past. Help me to not just say I give You my past, but show me how to actually lay it at Your feet. Show me how to move forward, LORD God. I don’t want to live in the past anymore. I want to live in Your perfect and holy will for my life. Help me to do so. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

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