“And each went straight forward; wherever the spirit was about to go, they would go, without turning as they went.” – Ezekiel 1:12
New seasons are rich with possibility and so full of wonder – especially during autumn, which ushers in the festive spirit (including the advent of the pumpkin spice lattes and everything nice). With the new, though, comes the decision to let go of the old or not – old ways, old habits, old regrets. Essentially, known as, “the past,” it may taunt and haunt and distract from the present. Or, it may serve as a period of reflection.
Perpetual motion is a constant part of life. For example, a clock doesn’t tick backwards – it moves forward, second-by-second. A marathon isn’t run backwards, runners run to win the race, towards the prize. And driving isn’t done in reverse, can you imagine trying to do that? Life is meant to be lived straight forward – following the Spirit’s lead, without turning back, without hesitation.
If you’re too consumed by the past, you’ll live in regret, and if you’re too focused on the future, you’ll live in fear. Instead, choose to be present in the present. Each moment is far too special and valuable to be wasted on worry, regret, or fear. Empty your anxiety and your hurts to the Lord and watch Him fill you with a supernatural joy and renewed sense of hope. Treasure memories and enjoy the gift of the present moment.
We remember to reflect, not to rehearse. Learn from your past mistakes, but don’t live there. It may be hard to let go, but it’s even harder not to let go. The shoulda, coulda, woulda’s will debilitate you and leave you feeling guilt-ridden and devastate you with unrest. For those who are holding on and unable to let go, know that your best days are ahead of you and not behind you. If you choose to focus on today's growth and not on yesterday's failures, your latter days shall be greater than your former.
Make the choice to not look back! How? Don’t ruminate on your hurt or your pain or what they said or what they did. Rather, “Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil” (Proverbs 4:25-27). As you make Jesus your single focus, the Ultimate Reward, may you find your path straight into the Father's heart. Live undistracted, gazing on His beauty, not looking to the left or to the right, rather straight ahead at His glory.
As we literally have a posture of prayer and spiritually surrender our heart’s desires for His, we prepare to break through into our breakthrough. Just as the leaves fall down, to break away, they gracefully make room for the new. Let go of everything that hinders love. Let go of fear, let go of bitterness, let go of hatred, and let’s collectively let God in.
If you willingly fall back, you will be pulled by the weight of your pain. But if you willingly fall forward, you will be strengthened by the measure of your surrender, by the degree of your faith.
Fall forward in prayer.
Fall forward in praise.
Fall forward in gratitude.
Fall forward in humility.
Fall forward in love.
Fall forward into God’s hands, His will, and trust that He will do exceedingly abundantly above all you can ask, dream, or imagine for you and through you (Ephesians 3:20). Believe and have faith that your best days are ahead of you and not behind you.
Many times, we are encouraged in the Bible to look forward, to look ahead, to not look back. A few of my favorite ones which serve as a constant encouragement and are worthy to meditate on include the following:
“Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them.” – Isaiah 42:9
“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” – Isaiah 43:18-19
“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: 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.” – Philippians 3:13-14
In following Jesus, there is no, “But let me first…” You’re either all in or all out! Stay on the straight and narrow path, because looking back prevents you from putting your all and doing your very best for the Lord in the present. Put the Kingdom of God first, His righteousness, then all else will be added unto you (Matthew 6:33).
This fall, let’s fall forward and not fall back.
Let’s appreciate the present and not rehearse the past.
Let’s find joy in simply being and not always doing.
Let's be intentional about resting and not striving.
As we gaze upon the beauty of the changing colors of the leaves and the surreal crispness of the chilled air while the sun continues to reflect its rays, may we choose to be present in His presence. As the time will soon fall back an hour, may we fall forward in adoration unto our King. Be found celebrating the coming harvest and abundant richness of His love towards us. Find it in your heart to discover the new that God has waiting for you!
What will you fall forward into? I plan on falling forward in love with the Lord, His plans, His voice, His presence, and who He is. There’s no greater treasure than to go forward into your destiny hand-in-hand with Him.
Love & Blessings,