“This is what the Lord says – he who made a way through the sea, a path through the mighty waters, ‘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 43:16, 18-19.”
“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.13 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 towards what is ahead, 14 I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus” Phil. 3:12-14
Some of us are a little prone to dwell in the past, particularly when it has hurt or bruised us, moving on is often easy said but difficult to do.
When I was at college on the first full service of the whole College the Principal, Christina Baxter, got each student up in turn, another vicary/lecturer person held a great big cross behind us, and prayed that we would know the freedom of Christ from the past and all that has hurt, damaged or inhibited us from being all we were meant to be and have the potential to be.
After having the cross held behind us, a very powerful symbol, we were anointed with oil, as being commissioned to live for Christ, follow him obediently.
One of those services I have never forgotten, but it felt a good message for new years eve…
Whatever is painful, disappointing or regrets we have lets leave them at the foot of the cross of Christ…
Asking God for his healing, redemptive and restorative power to free us from the past.
But also, to look to the future, knowing that we do not go alone, we go following in Christ’s footsteps, listening to his voice as he leads us forward.
Knowing that God is a God who changes people, transforms individuals and communities, as we encounter him afresh and anew, let him enable us to keep going where Christ has called us with faithfulness and perseverance.
Remembering the Kingswood Street Pastors key verse “Do not become weary in doing good, for at the right time we will reap a great harvest if we do not give up.” Gal.6.9.
And so with this in mind, let’s see this new year with a heart full of expectancy, looking for signs of the Kingdom of God breaking in.