Last Sunday we paused briefly to consider how we step on into the New Year…how we go from 2017 to 2018, as followers of Jesus who want to grow.
If you missed it, it’s a question worth considering.
I shared 3 thoughts….all from Philippians 3:12-13, as Paul reflects on himself as someone who belongs to Christ.
ONE: We need to admit our need to grow (v12) – In the previous verse Paul has expressed his desire to become more like Jesus, and now he says, “Not that I have already obtained all this…” Paul admits he hasn’t arrived…that he needs to keep on growing. I’m guessing we all feel the same as Paul – we want to keep on growing…of becoming more like Jesus. Growth starts when we admit our need to grow.
TWO: We need to PRESS ON (v12) – After admitting his need to keep growing, Paul says, in effect, “so I keep on…I keep pressing forward…I keep moving onwards.” Admitting our need to grow is only the first step…we have to take the next step too….and the next. This is what he refers to earlier on in his letter (2:12) as “working out your salvation”. In fact, see what he writes in the second half of 3:12….he “presses on to take hold of that which Christ Jesus has taken hold of him”. This is profound…Paul knows that us “working out our salvation” is in response to Christ’s initiative and saving grace. Christ has saved us to make us new…our response is to embrace that…and then to PRESS ON in that. How are you going to PRESS on this year?
THREE: We need to FORGET (v13) – Is there anything that is hindering you moving forwards? Any sin that is holding you back? Are you struggling to forgive yourself? Are you held back by shame or guilt? Do you feel unworthy? As we press on, we need to “forget what is behind”. We do this as we receive, respond to, and embrace Christ’s forgiveness. Start off this New Year by reminding yourself afresh of the amazing forgiveness that is ours’ in Christ Jesus.
Looking forward to pressing on together.
Love you family.