Summary: This sermon is for the Sunday after we turn back our clocks one hour.
If We Could Really Turn Back The Hands Of Time
12 Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead,
14I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
15 Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you. Nevertheless, to the degree that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us be of the same mind."
Last night or sometime this morning,
we turned back our clocks one hour.
Daylight Savings Time came to an end
and Central Standard Time returned.
We got back that hour we lost earlier this year
when we turned our clocks forward one hour.
What if we really could turn back time
and get back some of the things we did in the past?
Have you ever done something you later regretted?
Have you missed an opportunity that you later regretted?
Have you said something you later regretted?
All of us know the pain of regrets.
For some it could be the regret of a broken marriage.
For some it could be the regret of an abortion.
For some it could be the regret of a painful relationship.
For some it could be the regret of something you did.
For some it could be the regret of something you said.
All of us would like to go back and undo certain things of the past.
However, the important issue is not our regrets.
The important issue is moving beyond our regrets.
How do we do it?
Where do we start?
What do we do?
Our Bible passage today in Philippians chapter 3
gives us help with this subject!
The Holy Spirit inspired the Apostle Paul to write those words.
If anyone had reason for regrets, it was Paul.
Before his conversion to Christ on the road to Damascus
he had been a persecutor of the Christians.
He had been a thorn in the side of the early church.
He had stood passively by while Stephen was stoned to death.
However, he came to faith in Jesus
and moved beyond his regrets.
How did he do it?
Point #1. If you want to move beyond regret you must exercise Faith.
I like to go to the Small Animal Auction at Enterprise.
Before they sell the animals, they sell all kinds of items.
You should see all the treadmills, exercise bikes, and weight sets.
Obviously, people bought those things and then never used them
So those things did nobody any good!
Does an exercise program benefit if it is not carried out?
Likewise, faith does not benefit us unless it is exercised.
Faith offers the possibility of a new start.
Paul was given a fresh start by God.
The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 5:17 says: "if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
Nobody can go back and undo mistakes of the past,
But anyone can start from now and make a brand new end.
Many times we try working through problems,
only to realize things did not turn out properly.
It helps to go back to God's word and start over.
The beautiful part is that God gives us an opportunity to start over.
Faith offers us the possibility of a new start.
It also offers us the possibility
of being forgiven for our sins, mistakes and failures.
Psalm 103:12 says. "As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us."
Micah 7:19 says:
He will again have compassion on us, And will subdue our iniquities.
You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.
Point #2. If you want to move beyond regret you must learn to Forget.
The older I get the easier it is to forget things.
Unfortunately, I tend to forget the wrong things.
I can't seem to forget the many mistakes of my past.
However, there are times when forgetfulness is a positive thing.
All of us have experiences we would like to leave behind.
The following series of advertisements reportedly appeared in a daily newspaper:
Monday Paper: "The Rev. A.J. Jones has one color TV set for sale. Telephone 626-1313 after 7 p.m. and ask for Mrs. Donnelley who lives with him, cheap."
Tuesday PAPER: "We regret any embarrassment caused to Rev. Jones by a typographical error in yesterday's paper. The ad should have read: 'The Rev. A.J. Jones has one color TV set for sale, cheap...Telephone 626-1313 and ask for Mrs. Donnelley, who lives with him after 7 p.m.'"