Sunday, 30th December 2018
Rev Daniel Xi An Poon
2019 is approaching to the end. There are still a lot of things we have not yet achieved. At this time of the year, we often realize how fast the time goes by. Everyone has a past, a present and a future. We don’t know what is going to happen in the future, and we are unsure of what is happening in the present, but we all know what happened in our past. There may be things we have done that is shameful, hurtful, or unforgettable but this morning, Rev Daniel reminded us that God is bigger than everything and He can handle anything. So we need to forget the past, have hope in God and let Him help us to grow.
We should not focus on the past but to focus on having an intimate relationship with God, then our life can be strengthened and expanded. In Philippians 3:13, it says, “Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”
If we always complain about what happened in the past, always look back to the past, then we will most likely miss out on the blessings that are coming towards us. We all had a history, we all had times that we feel downcast, but why do some people succeed, and some people fell in the same life pattern: they change jobs, change relationships, they move from one place to another, from one city to another… but they still face the same problems in their lives. It’s easy for us to complain about the people and the environment, but we forgot that we are still staying in the past!
We tend to go to conferences or attractive meetings to seek God and to seek life transformation, but we don’t realize how God is with us even in our own weekly prayer meetings and daily devotions! We should get rid of our old mindset, forget what was in the past, and look toward to what is ahead! Apart from the first and foremost, WE MUST COME TO THE PRAYER MEETING, Rev Daniel also shared with us three important points about forgetting what is behind:
1. FORGET THE SUCCESS IN THE PAST
In the Bible, we learnt that if we don’t keep on moving forward then we will be left behind. We should have an attitude to always move forward, to humble ourselves and recognize that all the success we have right now is not because of what we have done or how good we are, but it’s all because of God! If we can’t forget our success in the past, then we will try to use our own strength to work hard. The we will forget to seek God, who can do more greater things than we can ever do!
2. FORGET THE HARDSHIP IN THE PAST
When Joseph saw his brothers in Egypt, he forgave them as he said in Genesis 50:20, “Even though you intended to do harm to me, God intended it for good, in order to preserve a numerous people, as he is doing today.” Joseph knew the hardship was a process, and only through God he was able to be successful. When time gets hard, we need to remind ourselves, it’s only a process for us to become who God intends us to be, and to reach where God intend for us to go. When we are able to forget the past hardship, then we will be able to receive blessings from God and to become better in His Kingdom!
3. FORGET THE LIFESTYLE IN THE PAST
We all have the lifestyle we are used to. Many people have questions and doubts about changing the way we do things, such as “why we need to wake up in the morning to do the devotion?” Or “why do we need to come to prayer meetings?” Lifestyle is when we allow certain habits to become part of our lives. Jesus said we need to put new wine in the new wine skin, and often we need to be willing to give up on our old lifestyle and habits in order to receive the new wine.
It’s just like going to the gym, even for someone who goes to the gym everyday, they might not have much physical transformation. It’s because they are so used to do what they normally do, and don’t allow a trainer to push them further to their limits. It’s the same for our spiritual life, we need to give up our old lifestyle, let the Holy Spirit guide us, to obey our authorities in ways we live, and we will be blessed.
When we are willing to break an old habit, an old lifestyle, and an old way of thinking, then God’s blessings will come. How to be blessed in 2019? Forget what is behind, humble ourselves, and receive the new wine! 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”