Looking back on the past, and reminiscing days and events gone by can be both an uplifting, and a melancholy experience. It’s fun to recollect a favorite sunset, or an epic cooking disaster. But when these moments don’t manage to strengthen us, they drag us down; causing us to dwell on our mistakes a prevent ourselves from moving forward.
As we find ourselves already at the end of the first month of the new year, I wanted to recall something a mentor once told me—it’s the story of a race car driver. The driver was on the final lap of the biggest race of the year. His boss told him to look in the mirror, and see how quickly his opponents were gaining on him. Instead of taking the advice, the driver knocked down his rearview mirror, saying “What’s behind me doesn’t matter now. Only what’s ahead.” As he looked out his windshield, the driver saw that the racetrack ahead of him was only open, empty space.
Our lives are like that race track. What’s behind us has happened, but it’s in the past. We are constantly moving in this life, and at a rapid pace, too. We don’t have time to dwell on what happened yesterday, or last year. We are given an open stretch of road that is just waiting for us to blaze a trail through.
My objective here is to remind all of us, and mostly myself, that God doesn’t care what happened in our past. He’s washed it away, and He wants us to make our future with Him. And when we are ready to step back, and allow Him to show us what He sees, then we will find that God has big plans for us, if we will just slide over into the passenger’s seat, and let Him drive.
I was thinking about this just the other day while I was listening to one of my favorite songs by Green Day. They’re not exactly a band full of stand-up guys, but they have some clean, motivating songs that I enjoy listening to. And one of these songs—called “Waiting”—reminded me of just how great of a future everyone in the world could have, if we could only wake up and see it.
The stanza that I was thinking of translates (as lyrics are hard to just read without breaking into the tune) into something like this:
I’ve been waiting a long time for this moment to come; and I’m destined for anything at all.
It’s the dawning of a new era, it’s calling—don’t let it catch you falling, ready or not at all.
Well, I’m so much closer than I have ever known—so wake up!
And that’s kind of what did it for me. I realized that God is waiting for me to be spiritually ready for the future that He is calling me to.
I’d like to close with a Bible verse that, now, I always think of when I hear the words ‘destined’, ‘future’,–and that I repeat whenever I’m finished listening to the above mentioned song.
It’s from Philippians 3:13,14. Paul says Brethren…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 Jesus Christ.