Learning how to drive can be stressful.
In my home state, most beginners must take a drivers education course. One of the first things covered is the importance of using mirrors. We use mirrors to change lanes and park. The most important is the rearview mirror.
The rearview mirror serves a multitude of purposes. It allows us to see behind us, stay alert, and prepare for upcoming dangers. Most would say it is important to check our mirrors with a quick glance every five to eight seconds. However, we cannot navigate well if looking backwards is our total focus. We might miss the hazards in front of us.
Brethren, I do not regard myself as laying hold of it yet, but one thing forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead.~Philippians 3:13 NASB
Moving forward with Christ as Paul did benefits us. The word “regard” (logizonmai) means “to conclude or make a calculation of something.” Paul had a clear view of himself and did not compare himself to others. Rather, he compared himself to Christ. He desired to mature as a believer. We should emulate Paul.
Perhaps, this is why the rearview mirror is small when compared to the windshield. Even the early inventors knew that where we are going is more important than where we have been. I like to glance at the progress I have made, and, while nothing is wrong with this, I must keep my eyes on the road ahead.
As the deer pants for the water brooks, So my soul pants for You O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.~Psalm 42:1-2 NASB
We should never be satisfied with spiritual attainments but keep our focus on Christ’s will for us. We should have a positive dissatisfaction with where we are today so that we can progress even more. This dissatisfaction will help us pursue God with a passion.
Always striding–but not striving–to mature is the true mark of a disciple on the move. Striding indicates we walk with long, decisive steps. By striving, we make significant efforts to achieve something. The difference is the decisive action needed to produce a definite result. When we check the rearview mirror and are not satisfied with where we are, we can concentrate on the one thing that leads to progress in our Christian life.
Here are steps that can help us keep focused on the goal:
1) The road we have traveled is behind us and will stay there. No matter how we traveled before, we still have a journey before us. Embrace it and move on.
2) The road we have traveled should encourage us to continue. The reward is in what is ahead, not where we have come from. Allow Jesus to be your destination so nothing will distract you.
3) The view behind is small because what is in front is more important. We can always strive for more on this Christian journey, so keep going.
4) Embrace the untraveled road ahead and keep the rear view in the right perspective. Follow Jesus’s leading and never be satisfied with where you are.
Are you living life in the rearview mirror? How can you focus on God’s good plan that lies ahead?
Lord God, help me not to make the road I have traveled a gauge of who I am in Christ. May I never be satisfied with attainments but always seek You and the plan You desire for me to walk in today.
In Jesus’ name, amen.
Copyright 2021: The Road Ahead: Charles E. Maldon, Jr.: All Rights Reserved