I thought of the Scripture today where Paul is talking about pressing on and is saying, “… I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” And I found myself saying, but I just can’t seem to do that. You know, the forgetting what’s behind and pressing on.
O, it’s easy to realize I haven’t attained to something or haven’t apprehended something—that’s easy to see. But it’s not so easy to see the ability to reckon myself to be resolved to forget what’s behind and press on—press toward the mark. And then I realized something I don’t think I’ve noticed (or at least I cannot currently recall noticing) that I have, and have had, a wrong focus. I’ve been focusing on the thing I’m trying to leave behind and I’ve been focusing on what’s ahead in light of what’s behind instead of simply focusing on the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
So what is that high calling? Is it the ability to forget or move on from the mistakes I’ve made, or the wrongs I’ve done, or the sins I’ve committed, or my motherhood failings? Is it to continually recall the failures of my yesterdays and yet recite the script? It’d be so easy to just say: not that I totally get this faith walk, but I am going to move past my failures and press on. And it would be all about me.
And then I marvel at the love of the Lord. I marvel that He is the focus. His life is the pursuit. It’s not so that I can move on and not ache with regret over yesterday that Jesus redeemed my life. Jesus redeemed my life because He loves me and wants me to walk with Him, yield my life to Him, give my hopes and dreams to Him. He redeemed my life that I could bring Him glory and honour… and inexplicably, so that He could show me the marvelous plan and purpose He has for me in this glory-giving, honour-giving life! He died for me that I might know Him, that I might have the fullness of joy, that I might have life – and that, everlasting! And so, why do I press on? That I may know Him.
Wherever you are today, you can know Him… your life is precious and He loves you. If you die tonight, you will either be in heaven or hell for eternity. That’s the truth. Sin separates us from God – do you know that? But there is a remedy — an eternal remedy and it is life, atoning death and life giving resurrection of the Lord Jesus. That’s the truth. We’ve all been separated from God but those who put their trust in Him and call on the name of the Lord Jesus will be saved. That’s the truth. It’s not by works, it by grace through faith in Him. That’s the truth.
You may have, to this point, not repented, not turned from sin and yielded your life to Christ… But today you have this choice before you… you may have failed in the past, but not today… you may have felt unworthy… but God…
Read this from Ephesians chapter 2:
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us,
5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
I pray you’ll go get your Bible… and read more of His great love for you… what He’s done for you… and the life eternal that’s yours in Christ Jesus. This is the truth.