Wednesday, August 10, 2022


by David Brenneman 

"Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13-14 NASB 

It's probably a late lesson in life to learn but it's a dawning realization that my memory problems are a blessing more than a curse.  That I really ought to embrace the idea of forgetting and do more of the reaching forward to what lies ahead. 

What and who I am in the body of Christ isn't revokeable by me or anyone else.  I didn't come up with what I am doing in the body of Christ.  The Spirit places each one including me. 

My personal happiness isn't necessarily on the table.  Many people never get a chance at personal happiness after coming to Christ. Many, due to God's plan, walk into glory in Heaven soon after a profession of faith in Jesus for salvation. Some due to it being their deathbed decision. Some because the country in which they lived will murder converts.  

My personal happiness is something honestly nailed to the cross of Jesus Christ right up there with everything else that's of me.

Jesus is more concerned about your holiness than your happiness.

Our sanctification, our justification in Christ Jesus is paramount to our lives and the lives of those who we interact with.  A brother in Christ, whom I am now friends with, set aside his reason for being at a form employer of mine to check on my well-being.  How I was doing mattered more than his job. That's what so impressed me about him to reach out to him.  That's what lead me to learn the reason.  He certainly is of the body of Christ.  He's a brother in Christ Jesus. Leading by example.  

In recent weeks I have heard a sermon here at my home church as to moving past stubborn sins.  Being intentional on forgetting what was behind is a key part of it.  

What I had been honestly disturbed about in my inability to remember the things that I wanted to.  I don't have ready access to most of my memories like many others do. I struggle to remember what I did this morning let alone anything in recent days, months or years.  Music seems to be the only thing that I seem to be able to truly memorize.  So I focus on God honoring music. 

Some wonder at what I post on here. To tell the truth, I can read this in a few hours and be amazed at what was written. At roughly 4 am, having gotten up at 3:15 am, I am not awake enough to know coherent thoughts.  What's written isn't in the scope of my abilities. The coffee is only beginning to do something at that stage. 

My direction in life abruptly changed in October of last year. Some call it a change of seasons.  I appear to have lost friendships along with my past life there.  I mourn the loss of the friends and the apparent loss of some, and am trying to embrace the new that are in my life now.  

With this change I am focusing on being better organized. Focusing on doing more to keep up with things around the house. Focusing on what it is I have been called to be doing in Jesus Christ.  I firmly believe that part of Romans where it says that we are placed as the Spirit sees fit to put us in the body.  We should stay true to our calling in Christ until only such a time as He sees fit to move us to a different ministry.  We don't live for us in Christ Jesus. 

Part of the lesson on forgetting what lies behind is to do with letting go of past sins.  To not dwell on them. To not give them literally the time of day.  To break that chain so that we can move forward in becoming more like Christ Jesus.

I have seen pictures in recent days saying to the effect that when Satan reminds you of your past, remind him of his future. 

Satan's not as consumed with you personally as you might think.  He has minions to mess with you.  Your sin nature messes with you. He counts on our painful times to keep us from serving in the body as we were called to be doing. He counts on us remembering the past in the wrong light to bind our hands and feet. 

His work doesn't and cannot cancel out the truth that we are Christ's workmanship. Created in Christ Jesus for good works that we might walk in them. 

My responsibilities include being true to who I am in Christ Jesus. My role in the body of Christ is to do what my Heavenly Father wants of me.  Setting my eyes on the things that are above and not on the things that are of this world. 

Toby Mac has a song called Move. It's a really good motivational song. It's a reminder to keep moving and not stop. Life's going to hurt, I still will sin, but I need to keep moving. I need to keep living a life that is what God wants of me in Christ Jesus. 

Just like everyone else, I too have a painful past.  Crushing hurts and distressing times. Rejection, people being excessive in their criticism of me.  People not understanding me.  Satan and his minions love to throw those things at me.  

Today's passage is a healthy helpful reminder to forget what lies behind.  To focus on who and what I am to be in Christ Jesus.  My identity isn't wrapped up in my anything other than who I am in Christ Jesus.  Anything in this life is in addition to that description.  It was extremely important to me to find what I was called to do after moving. I sought out people to help me understand what I was to be doing for Jesus.  Staying true to my calling in Christ Jesus is extremely important to me.  I want to be found by Him doing that which He wanted me to be doing.  As weird as it may sound Earthly employment means nothing to me in defining my identity.  

I point again to what was written earlier, that has to do with what's written each morning at this hour. I do not intentionally write anything towards any particular person.  On at least one occasion Paul was provoked in his spirit to write about things he saw.  If God says to write about something then that's what I write about.  This is posted entirely publicly. It's not for me to question why, it's just for me to do.  If people are convicted by what's written then maybe that's why they were drawn to read it in the first place. 

The goal of this blog is to write what I am told to write.  

Getting back to the forgetting was taught in that sermon that we need to let go of the past. Part of that letting go is forgetting it. Intentionally. Laying ahold of what is ahead. To embrace what Jesus has for you in Him. Forgiveness and peace.  

I have probably more peace today than I have ever had in my life.  I take whatever is on my heart to my Savior each morning on the way to work, often during the day as well.  

Look at what sins you struggle with. See about praying about this passage. Ask God to help you be who He intended you to be in the body of Christ. He has peace that passes all understanding waiting for us when we are living in obedience to Him.  

No comments:

Post a Comment