DO NOT LOOK BACK
My son is a toddler. Whenever we go out he is strapped into his car seat which in turn is strapped to the back seat of my car. When we have to stop at traffic lights I look back at him, call his name, make a funny face or blow a kiss and ask if he is ok. And as soon as the light changes I shift my attention back to the road ahead of me. On occasion though, I have tried to look back at him while in motion but it’s virtually impossible.
This is exactly how impossible it is to move forward and make good progress at anything if we keep looking back. We must always look ahead. That is the only way forward. There cannot be any other way. If we look back, we just might get rooted to the spot in fear or in all kinds of negative emotions like anger, bitterness, regret or resentment. We all remember the story of Lot’s wife in the bible. She looked back when God told them not to. God wanted to save her entire family from being destroyed along with Sodom and Gomorrah and He asked them to run out and even sent an angel to help them get out. Maybe she looked back out of being curious to see what was going to happen or perhaps it was with regret that they would be leaving behind a place they had come to know as home; but whatever it was that made her look back it cost her, her life.
Dear friend, I pray that our tomorrows will always be better than our yesterdays so that we will not be looking back living in regret.“Jesus said to him “Anyone who starts to plow and then keeps looking back is of no use for the Kingdom of God.” Luke 9:62 Good News Translation If looking back makes one unfit for the Kingdom of God it is definitely no good for making progress at anything. Apostle Paul said as much to the Philippians. “Brothers and sisters, I can’t consider myself a winner yet. This is what I do: I don’t look back, I lengthen my stride, and I run straight toward the goal to win the prize that God’s heavenly call offers in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3: 13-14 Gods Word Translation To win the prize is to run towards it and not away from it. So I do not know what happened in your past that keeps pulling you back. Can we leave it there please? It cannot ever be worth going back to time and time again. Everybody has a past and no matter how good and brilliant it was, the future is what lies ahead of us and that is where we are going. Let us focus on that.
There is the tendency these days to be angry and resentful of how terrible and wicked the world has become. But looking back and focusing on what used to be is not going to make anything better. There are consequences for looking back when we should be looking forward. We must truly look ahead as Paul said “toward the goal”. The striker who wants to score a goal for his team must look toward the goal otherwise he will lose the ball to his opponent and maybe lose the match entirely. Looking back can result in a collision that can take one’s life. What Jesus told us is this: “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 New Living Translation.
Trials and sorrows are part of life. But they are not to overcome us because Jesus has already overcome them. Jesus encourages us to be confident in Him and in the fact that He has overcome the world. Our charge is to be “looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith”. This simply means we should rely on Jesus always. And not look to anything or anyone else.
If that is the case, then we must STOP LOOKING BACK.