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Moving Ahead and Looking Back: Day 2

And you shall remember the whole way that the Lord your God has led you...
Deuteronomy 7:21

“If God is your co-pilot, you need to switch seats”   Church billboard

A decade of memories and milestones, challenges and changes. As I packed and taped up, I couldn’t help but think back over all that had happened in the last ten plus years: our youngest child’s wedding, five new grand-children, and three passing of both my parents and an aunt that had been like a second mother, as well as new friends and some great opportunities for service and spiritual growth.

But with remembrance comes regret and those memories are never far behind either: my parent’s last chapter of life, full of acrimony and confusion, as my attempts to get them to a safe place were at cross-purposes with their difficulty in understanding why time couldn’t stand still, missed opportunities and second guessing in a difficult church situation, the graceless stumbles on the steep learning curve associated with the role of mother-in-law. Oh, I can go on and on…

But while painfully true, these admissions aren’t the fruit of a humble spirit, but a self-centered one. Focusing on our own performance as the leading character in our life story will always lead to disappointment. Why should it come as a surprise to any card-carrying member of a fallen humanity that we will make poor choices, operate from a limited or flawed perspective, say and do hurtful things?

The right focus is not us with our wins and losses, good days and bad. The correct focus is on God, and God-centered is always hopeful. When we get up every morning and choose to concentrate on what He is doing in our lives, to anticipate His victory, even in the midst of our defeat, we can find peace in any situation. In seeking His wisdom through prayer and the Word rather than leaning on our own understanding of a situation, (Proverbs 3:5,6) we will experience His mercies to us as refreshing surprises.

We cannot change the past or stop the clock, but in God and because of Christ, our best days are ahead.

Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

         Signed, Paul (formerly self-righteous Pharisee, persecutor of the church)

Nancy Shirah   

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