Summary: A message about taking care of the one thing and then moving forward to greater things in the New Year.
Text: Philippians 3:13-14
Biblical Perspective for having a Happy New Year
Brethren, 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. Phil 3:13-14
Well we made it to this last Sunday of 2013. When we look back we can agree that we could have never predicted that we would have seen the things happens as they had. The tragedies and the victories. To me this seems to be a year of tragedies. One after another and another. Unforeseen deaths. Deaths in theaters or on the streets.
These are the verses that people use to talk about the New Year. Over the years I would avoid these scriptures because they become clichés and predictable. Yet if there has ever been a
Paul gives us a great formula here to make this next year even greater. To me at my first reading it seems like Paul make a contradiction. He said, “this one thing I do”. Yet we go on to read three things, three pieces of advice. So my answer is, it is a process. There is a flow here. First you have to forget those things that are behind, then you can move on to reaching forward to those things before, and finally pressing toward the mark.
Yet if you don’t start with one you can’t go to the next step.
If you stay there you live there.
I. Realize the need for Change
A. You have not apprehended
Philippians 3:13a Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: (taking hold of it, understand everything)
Paul understood that with all he has accomplished. With all he has done for the Lord. With the visions the Lord had given him. With the contentment he has given in his heart. Paul still understood that he has not “arrived”. He still does not understand it all. No matter who he is there is still so much more to learn. There is still growing to do
B. God has a definite plan for your life
Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove (Original: δοκιμάζω - Transliteration: Dokimazo - Phonetic: dok-im-ad'-zo - test, examine, scrutinize, to see whether it is genuine or not) what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
The Message 2 Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.
Psalms 37:23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delights in his way.
No matter your age or condition God still has a plan for your life and you will be where you are at until you fulfill that plan from the Lord.
II. Forget the Past
Phil 3:13b “forgetting those things which are behind,”
There is a time when we no longer focus on the past but begin to put our focus on the present. Learning from the things of the past vowing not to repeat them but not dwelling on them.
A. Forget your past failures
1. Spiritual failures
2. Family failures
3. Occupational failures
4. Financial failures
B. Forget you past successes
1. Stop gloating over accomplishments
2. Stop resting on your laurels
3. Stop living in “the good old days”
Forgiving past debts
Forgive past debtors
Luke 5:37, NIV “And no one pours new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the new wine will burst the skins, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined”
Bishop T.D. Jakes - Free Your Mind
Are you ready for a new chapter in your life? In order to move forward into the blessings God has for you, you have to be willing to let go of the old. The things that are behind you are not nearly as important as what is out in front of you. It’s time to get ready for the “new”!
You may have had some unfair things happen, things that you don’t understand. But let me tell you, you have come too far to stop now. Instead of allowing those things to hold you back, why don’t you let go and take a step of faith into the new? It’s time to get a new, bigger vision; it’s time to get a new, fresher outlook; it’s time to rise up with a new attitude! Instead of settling where you are, pick up and move forward. Have the attitude that says, “I may not understand it; it may not have been fair, but I am not getting stuck on this page. I know God has a new chapter for me — a chapter filled with blessings, favor and victory!”