Message from the Pastor

As we enter into 2022, one of the things we must do is forget what is behind. But one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead (Phil 3:13). I think it is interesting that Paul says, “This ONE thing I do,” yet it is a two - part instruction. One that is vital as we move from one season to another. Especially if the last season was filled with challenges, chaos, and uncertainty. As this new year begins, God has continually brought two scriptures to my mind. One being Philippians 3:13, the other is found in Luke 24:5.

“Why seek ye the living among the dead?” As we know, three days before these women had watched one of their trusted leaders sell Jesus out for 30 pieces of silver. They stood by as one of their beloved disciples denied he even knew Jesus. They watched their Lord die on a cross as He cried out to the Father, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me? ” These were the things on their mind as they rushed into the tomb to bring spices to the buried. Yet, when they arrived, the tomb was empty. I can ’t even imagine what they must have thought. Suddenly, they heard these words, “Why seek ye the living among the dead? ” In other words, “He lives!” With those words, their focus was redirected.

From death, to life. From feelings of loss and betrayal, to the uncompromised Word of God. From current events, to the truth of the promises of God. From deep grief, to indescribable joy.

Those eight words changed everything. We too must remember as we step into this new year – don ’t seek life among things that have passed. It’s time to let go of the disappointments of 2021 and remove ourselves from a place of hope deferred. We will all face disappointments; however, we can’t take up residence in that place. We must instead choose to move past them. God
doesn’t want us to stop at disappointment, His Word says our hope will not be cut off. We must continue to believe His promises, regardless of what we walked through in the previous year.

The second part of this instruction is to press forward to what lies ahead. God says in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome. ” (AMP) Regardless of what we endured in the last season, what disappointments it held; God has a plan. A good plan and a good future for us. We have a hope, one that will not be cut off, for a good final outcome. God ’s plan for us is not to live among the evil but to dwell in peace and welfare. Make no mistake, that is our God -given final outcome. If we choose to look toward the future with a lens of disappointment, we will have no hope.

We must press forward. To what? To our destiny in God. And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren (Rom 8:28 -29.)

Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you; Before you were born, I sanctified you (Jer 1:5.) Before we were born, God knew us and called us into a destiny. That doesn’t change when we go through a challenging season. The gifts and callings of God, in our life, never change. In the year ahead, may we do this “one thing.” To leave what is behind and press forward into our God -given destiny with courage and determination. May we be blessed anew in 2022! - Kathy Wafer

 

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