As we end our 21-Day Fast today, let me challenge you with the words of Isaiah and our word for Restoration Church in 2018!
“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.”
Several years ago, I spoke on these verses at a weekend retreat. I always liked the idea of God turning the deserts of my life into streams and making a way out of the wilderness, but truthfully, I never really understood why we had to forget the former things. I mean, all throughout the Old Testament He instructed His people to place Remembrance Stones and make alters of Remembrance so those who passed by them would not forget. He even told His disciples in the New Testament to, “Do this in remembrance of Me,” as they partook of communion together. So, aren’t we supposed to remember the former things?
As I researched these verses there were several things that stood out to me as to why we needed to “forget the former things and not dwell on the past.”
God was asking the Israelites to re-focus their eyes. Not to completely forget what He’s done but to look forward for Him doing something new, and be expectant in the new thing.
Because if they didn’t, they would miss what He was about to do. Yes, they were in captivity again, but this time was different. This was a new time, a new desert, and a new exodus for His people. The past miracles were nothing compared to what God wanted to do for them and they are nothing compared to what He wants to do in our future!
Many of us get stuck in the past by focusing on our mistakes and all that went wrong. Some of us get stuck in the past by focusing on how great it was and want to relive our “glory days” and all that went right. The truth is, we must be careful not to miss what God wants to do by dwelling on the past whether good or bad. If we are continually looking behind we will miss it because we cannot see where we are going or where God is leading us. If we are ever going to move on to new things in Christ we must learn that, we cannot depend upon our past victories to sustain us.
We must forget the former things and instead, we must move forward with expectancy. We must believe Big, and we must exercise our faith. Testimonies of what God has done increase our faith to believe He will do it again, and He will. But God does not repeat Himself exactly the same in every miraculous situation. When we read the stories and testimonies of the times Jesus healed, not one is the same. Each time, it was a different and unique experience, because God is alive and each one of us is unique. God loves to move in fresh new ways. He wants us to be on the lookout for what He will do next because it won’t be like the last time. God doesn’t want to us to stay focused on what He did, He wants us to look forward to what He will do next. He is always looking to do a new thing.
This year God has charged Restoration Church and those who are part of our family to “Walk in Newness!” If we are going to get anywhere in our spiritual life we must understand that, we cannot live on yesterday’s faith and provision, it will only take us so far. Instead, look to God – He wants to do a NEW THING!
Are you ready to look ahead and no longer focus or dwell on the things in the past?
Father God, we are ready to leave our past bondage and captivity behind. Help us to refocus our eyes onto You. We look to You with an expectancy for You to do a New thing in us, for us and through us. Our eyes are focused on You and we are ready for Your Holy Spirit to move. Come God, and do a New Thing!