Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A NEW YEAR & A NEW YOU! Part #2

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Do not call to mind the former things, Or ponder things of the past. "Behold, I will do something new, Now it will spring forth; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, Rivers in the desert" (Isaiah 43:18-19 NASB).

 

"Strip yourselves of your former nature/conduct [put off and discard your old unrenewed self] which characterized your previous manner of life and becomes corrupt through lusts and desires that spring from delusion; 23And be constantly renewed in the spirit of your mind [having a fresh mental and spiritual attitude], 24And put on the new nature (the regenerate self) created in God's image, [Godlike] in true righteousness and holiness" (Ephesians 4:22-24 AMP).

 

The scripture also says in Ephesians 4 to not be characterized by the previous manner that is corrupt through former lusts, and leaves you delusional. Keeping a former mind set causes you to be delusional about your present and your future. The word delusion is defined as being a false belief held despite strong evidence against it. It is self-deception. It is an abnormal mental state, and the place in which someone can be misled. To summon it up, a delusion is a false identity of yourself. It is not the true you, but the misled, confused, and trapped you.

 

Ephesians 4 tells us that the only way to combat delusions is to become new by having a renewed mind and a new spiritual attitude, which brings about a regenerated you. When you Regenerate, you reform, re-create, reconstitute in a better form or condition. Regenerate also means to revive or produce anew; to bring into existence again. When you regenerate, you are renewed and restored to a favorable state.

 

I know for a moment in your life things were looking unfavorable, torn-down, and in utter ruins, but God is about to regenerate you and you will rebuild, restore, renew, regroup, revive into a more favorable state. The Regeneration of the Lord is igniting your Revolution into becoming the Total Person. Now back to our steps of walking into The Total Revolution in our original scripture text in Isaiah 43.

Step #2 in walking into your Total Revolution is not to "ponder the past" (Isaiah 43:18). Many would say at this juncture, aren't the former and the past the same thing?

The former aspect of your singleness was the mind set (conduct/nature). However, the past relates to the time and things that transpired in your singleness. The word Past is defined as gone by or elapsed in time, of, having existed in, or having occurred during a time previous to the present. The past is a bygone, having formerly been or served as previous or earlier. The past is the history of a person, the earlier period of someone's life. The past is no longer current or relevant as it relates to your New Year, the New You, and your Total Revolution.

The past can further be defined as a former period of someone's life kept secret or thought to be shameful. This traps you into believing the notion of that which has already been is all that there is ever going to be. The past is simply that, it is that which has already happened. Your past is over, and you are called now to regenerate in order to have a revolution. Until, you release your past, you will never be able to unleash your future. If you let your past live, your future will die!

"I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us" (Philippians 3:13-14 NLT). Paul had a true concept of not being bound by his past in that he said his focus would not be on that, which has already occurred, but rather the new life that was to come for him. Paul only consulted his past in order to use it as a testimony. We are called to recall the past in that way, but not in order to allow it to thrive now and

That word Forget is used in the term of leaving behind that, which is done and settled with.  Paul is not telling us to lose all memory of our oppressed past, but he is telling us not to dwell in the past because there is a mark and goal that we must obtain in God. Forgetting those things which are behind you also concerns your past sins, let downs, and loses. 

You must understand that if you focus too much on your past mistakes, hurts, pains, disappointments, and other things, you will miss what God has in store for you. Your past doesn't determine your future! Your yesterday is gone and your new tomorrow is on the way! Paul knew that if he kept focusing on the past, then he would never get to the mark of the high calling of God. Paul stated, "I press toward the mark."

 

The word Press means to apply with steady force, and to be steadfast. Understand that God has brought you out of a past in order to take you into a future. However, you cannot get to that future place that God has for you unless you leave your past behind you.

 

I am reminded of the story in Genesis 19 about Lot and his wife when the Lord instructed them to flee for their lives and not to Look Back! God also told them not to Stop anywhere! Unfortunately, Lot's wife looked back and became a pillar of salt.  The reason for not looking back was because death was behind them, but new life was ahead of them. If you stay in the past then death will literally be in front of you because you will have no vision for your new future. The Bible says, "Without a vision the people perish!"  Tell yourself, "Start looking ahead!" Also, Tell yourself, "Press into God, and get ready for a new thing."