READ PART 1 HERE
It’s been said that in order to move forward we have to go backward. I don’t know which ancient sage first said this proverb but I suppose there is truth in it. But how true are these wizened words? Modern science would say that in order for an object to move forward, it must go in the forward direction, not reverse. I wonder just what these sages knew.
With 2017 fast unfolding, many go into the new year with much excitement—it is to be the year that whatever they’ve yearned for will finally come to pass. But still others enter it with much fear and uncertainty. Would the terrible things that transpired last year occur again? Would the problems (you know what they are) continue throughout this year? And you feel that gloom come on you all over again… The future seems unclear and you’re not sure how you’re supposed to go on.
This is where I say STOP!!! This is where we must take a breather and look backward for a little while.
Take a second look. The prophet Jeremiah certainly did:
“This I recall to mind, therefore I have hope. Through the LORD’S mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23)
And David too, when he was in the wilderness of Judah:
“Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You. Thus I will bless you while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.
“When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. Because You have been my help, therefore in the shadows of Your wings I will rejoice.” (Psalm 63:5-7)
Do you notice in the scriptures above that because of a pre-existing (or past) situation or nature, it causes something to happen in the future?
Because you have been my help (past), therefore in the shadows of Your wings I will (future) rejoice.
Not only do the scriptures describe that the past can determine the future, but also the present. In Lamentations, Jeremiah is describing that what was in the past (“recalling to mind”) causes him to therefore HAVE hope, which is for the now, the present situation.
It’s obvious why when we look backward, and look at the troubling times that occurred in the last year, we have trouble believing that we can move forward. This is when we really can’t move forward by going backward, if we look back only at the sorrows and defeats. But we can move forward by going back, only when we look at this one thing—His Word, which tells us who God is, what He has done, and what He’ll continue to do.
If you fear looking back at your past, you don’t have to. You just have to look at the right thing. Like David and Jeremiah, you can look back to have hope for your present circumstances, and hope for the future. You can move forward. Just look at His Word.
“You crown the year with Your goodness, and your paths drip with abundance.”
Rebecca Ticoalu serves as the director of Wellsprings Creative, the worship creative ministry of Jesus Reigns International and Abundant Grace Christian Church located in NJ. She is the founder of LOVE OUT LOUD, a love movement fighting against slavery and poverty through artistic and creative expressions.