“Don’t be afraid to keep moving on, For what was before, now has gone, God wants to accomplish so much more, But we need to move forward in the LORD”
M.S. Lowndes, based on Isaiah 43:18-19
“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, NIV
There are parts of our past that we desperately miss, and there are parts of our past that haunt us. There were good days, there were bad days, and there were days. All these days have added up to make us who we are today. But today, we have the choice to live for tomorrow…rather than letting the past drag us down. Sometimes it may feel impossible to shed those old layers off. We find comfort in what we once knew so well. Friend, let me tell you—there is so much more joy in pursuing what Christ is doing PRESENTLY.
It’s useless to move forward if we aren’t moving towards the LORD. In fact, if you’re moving forward holding onto past pains or promises, you are actually stepping backwards. We have to loosen our grip on what once was, and allow renewal to enter in. Having memories is not a bad thing, it only affects us negatively when we wish we lived inside of them—when we allow the past to consume our present and threaten our future.
Longing for the past does not bring it back. If there is something moving about what you once had, appreciate it and pursue it today in the present. The memories we miss are usually tied to joy, laughter, and passion. So today we choose to pursue joy, laughter, and passion. Right here. Right now. God has moved in incredible ways in the past. And he will only continue his miraculous work in your future.
Focusing on the pain of the past clouds our vision of the PRESENT. I don’t know about you, but I definitely want to have clearer vision.
Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!
I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.
Sometimes we cling to the past because we miss the good times. Sometimes we hold onto the past because we feel we are stilled owed an apology, or we feel that not enough time has passed to fully heal. Yet other times, many of us may fix our eyes behind us because we fear the future. We can be absolutely certain of the events of the past because they have already happened, and the future is filled entirely with the unknown. This can be a scary thought, but the closing phrase of this verse is a promise. A wasteland is a place where there is no life – nothing flourishes there, there is no rain. This future God is speaking of isn’t full of greener grass and all smiles all the time, but he promises to bring life to this place. A desert is no longer desolate once a river cuts through it – where there is water, land springs to life. Things that were once dead are revitalized as streams of life guarantee a future and grant hope in the barren place. God is making life in a place and time where there does not seem to be a way forward. God creates life where there is none, out of the dust. God brings about a hopeful future from every past.
Let us clear the clouds from our vision; let us throw aside the hindrance of the past. We are here and now, and God is providing living water right in front of us.
Devotional written by Heather and Daniel Christy. Graphic designed by Isaac Taleno.