Victory: Forget What is Behind

In Philippians 3:13 Paul uses an Olympic runners’ example when he says,

“Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

Now, the word I want you to notice here is ‘forget.’ Paul is reminding us that good runners don’t look back because then you will lose the race. By keeping your eyes trained on the track; you keep your eyes on the goal and are not wasting any energy or focus looking at the ground you’ve already covered. “Forget what is behind…”

Let’s talk about each of these three things we are to forget:

1. First of all, growing spiritually means forgetting your past achievements. Earlier in Philippians 3, Paul listed all of his great spiritual achievements. I’m not sure about you, but I know my own list of past spiritual achievements is nothing in comparison to his. Yet Paul said about his impressive list, “None of them really matter.”

There was an airline ad line that said, “We’ve got to earn our wings every day.” That’s a great way to describe how it is spiritually. You can’t run today on spiritual memories. God wants usto never look back, never become complacent, and to actually be restless for more progress in our relationship with Him.

2. The second thing in Paul’s forget list is forgetting your past failures. When Peter had fished all night and yet caught nothing, Jesus said, “Go out there and fish again. You’ll catch more than you ever have or ever dreamed.” This is another example that we need to forget our past failures because they don’t matter today.

3. Finally, the third thing that you’re going to have to forget in order to make spiritual progress is past damages. If you’re going to get on with your life spiritually and go for God’s gold medal, you’ve got to forget the past damages and press ahead. You know, the Bible says, “Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” So get God’s divine eraser and ask Him to help you erase the past, move on, and as a result, set you free.

Satan loves to have us focus on what we can’t change – the past because of the fact that it can’t be changed. He wants you to think about those past failures because you can’t do anything about them. He wants you to think about those past damages because you can’t change those.

Now, I’ve never been a runner but in my early years as a new housewife and mama I was a dismal failure on the homekeeping end of things. As my family grew – out of pure desperation – I learned little by little how to keep up with the house, little ones, meals, and laundry.

Then the little ones became bigger ones and they were replaced by more precious little ones . . . and I was sinking again. I was behind in everything except loving and nurturing my husband and children. As for our home, our meals, our clothes . . . well, let’s just say they were all going downhill.

Once again, I was in over my head. It was at this point that I realized things had to change. I had to forget my old habits and stop thinking of myself as a homemaking failure. I needed to press on because I was raising children who only knew how to keep a house messy.

As I replaced my bad habits with new ones, I also trained my children to actually be a help in keeping up the house and our work in it (Click here to see how I did it). And that is the parting thought I wanted to leave you with. It was only after I got myself retrained that I could train my children.

And then I learned, that it was only at this point God could grow me to look more like Him.

God has things He wants to teach you. He wants to help you look more like Him. He has plans and hopes for you. But it is only after we forget the past and begin reaching out for the future that He can bring us to the next level.

Remember, when Satan can keep us thinking about what you can’t change today, he is keeping you from thinking about what you can change today and the future that has yet to be written.

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Do you have something you need to leave in the past?

Love, Love, Love,

Lorrie, Randy’s Rib

Dedicated to Helping You Live God’s Priorities, Love Your Abundant Life, and Laugh Along the Way!

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4 Responses to Victory: Forget What is Behind

  • Andrea Maddiex says:

    Damages, that is the hardest to leave behind. Particularly when they are still fresh. But, I put my eyes on the Lord and try to remember how while STILL ON THE CROSS he was forgiving the damages. Wonderful article!

    • Lorrie Flem says:

      Too often we rely on our emotions instead of the FACTS! Keep reminding yourself of the truth…He will help you leave behind all that He has forgiven!

  • Michelle says:

    Thank you so much for these encouraging words today. I really needed to hear them…Satan has been a little bit too much in my head, striking me down with words of not being good enough and feelings of failure. I need to draw strength on the word of God and know that I am more than good enough for Him.

    Thanks again~

    • Lorrie Flem says:

      I am so delighted that God used these words to defeat the evil one! Continue to dwell on God’s truth because it truly does ‘set you free’!

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