Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – August 22, 2017
But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit. Jeremiah 17:7-8
For many people, living in the past is their biggest challenge. They idealize days gone by and wish for something that was, believing that if they could just go back life would be better than today.
But God reminds us in Ecclesiastes 7:10. . .
“Do not say, ‘Why were the old days better than these?’ For it is not wise to ask such questions.”
It is not wise because looking back in regret chokes the life out of your days, which are finite. Once each minute clicks past on the clock, it is gone forever, never to be recovered. It’s not wise because it steals your joy. It’s not wise because it hinders your service to Christ. And it’s not wise because it’s not the truth. Every moment of every day is a mixture of good and bad, blessings and things that wound.
But what is true, is that God is working in the present. As some say, he is the God “I Am” not “I Was.” He is always moving forward in new work and blessing us in the moments we have right now.
One afternoon many years ago, I sat quietly in my favorite chair talking to the Lord. In my mind’s eye, I saw two fields, one was dried up and filled with broken sticks and scorched plants. Nothing was flourishing there and I was standing at the far end of it, holding broken sticks and dead plants in my hands. I was grieved that nothing was growing in the field, and I wished that there was still life in it.
I noticed that there was a flourishing field right next to the one where I stood and Jesus was there. He motioned for me to come to Him. Suddenly, I understood what I needed to do. I ran straight into His arms. He smiled at me lovingly and asked, “What took you so long?” Right then, I knew I had spent years looking over my shoulder in regret, wishing that today was yesterday. I had been believing that the former days were better than these.
In that moment, I understood His message to me. “You’ve been standing in that field from the past for way too long, trying to get life from it, grieving over what it was, holding dead sticks in your hands. But I’m not working in that field anymore. That’s long gone. I’m working here now. This field is your life today. In the present. This field is thriving!”
Are you looking back, believing that the former days were better than these? Are you standing in a field of regret, a field of loss, a field where life once was? Are you wishing God would resurrect something He was doing in your life before but is now dead? Join Him in His new work. Join him in the present! That’s where He wants to bless you.
What are you waiting for?
“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life” (Psalm 143:8).
PrayerLord, thank you that you are always working in my life to bless me. Help me to trust you and not to live in regret or unbelief. Amen.
ApplicationIf you know there is something from the past that you need to release and trust the Lord with, talk with Him about it and tell Him you want to live fully in the present.
Related ReadingPsalm 56:3; 2 Corinthians 5:7; Psalm 37:3
Post/Tweet todayOur former days do not have to be our best days, we can trust the Lord that the best is yet to be! #WisdomHunters #livinginthepast
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