I’ve noticed a pattern in my heart and in my prayers.
A reaching back.
A trying to recapture the past.
A spiritual discontent that glamorizes the past.
That time when I was reading God’s Word everyday.
Those months where I prayed faithfully every morning.
The season when I read God’s Word in little chunks all day.
That point in time when I was always singing and worshiping.
Those times when it was better…when I was better.
And over again I find myself reaching into the past to shame my present. Whatever I’m doing now to seek God and know Him, isn’t good enough, because I could be, should be, doing this too and that as well…after all, I did them then.
But in the midst of one of these self-deprecating internal monologs, I realized…
I don’t want to go back.
I don’t want to go back to those days. Because in those days I was immature in that one way and God hadn’t yet started working on me in that other way and I was so naive in those areas too...
I don’t want to go backward spiritually.
And I shouldn’t want to go backwards spiritually! Because however glorious that time and season was, however rich my devotional or prayer life, God has grown me so much since then.
I don’t want to go back to that season, I want to go forward into a new season.
I want to grow forward and I want grow more.
I want to go forward into the new seasons and times God has for me.
I want to grow more in my discipline to seek relationship with God.
I want to go forward with God.
I want more of God's Spirit in me.
I want to strain ahead into the things God has for me, deepening my love for Him as I go.
I don't want to go back to how things were, I want to to go forward into more. I want to go forward into deeper with God. I want to go forward into new and settled and deeper and higher and hard and good.
Because if moving into the future is not drawing me closer to God, is not drawing me deeper into relationship with Him, and is not pushing me forward in serving and loving His people, then something is seriously wrong.
I want the days and years of my life to add up to growth and forward motion. But that will never happen if I spend my time pining for the past.
I want to go forward in my walk with God. I want more of Him working and in through me. And that will never be found by reaching back.
So I'm learning to be thankful for what has passed in my life, to learn from it, the good and the bad, and yet to point my eyes and heart forward.
I'm heading forward and coming for more.