No one will argue that 2020 was a major challenge for our country and each one of us. We have faced some things that I have never experienced in my lifetime with chaos seeming to be the word of the day. And at the end of it all we have been given a major challenge going forward … forget yesterday and leave it in God’s hands.
Isa 52:12 For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the LORD will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rereward.
In contrast to Israel’s hurried Exodus from Egypt, God tells the Israelites in exile that they are to go out in an orderly fashion and not be in a rush as they commence their long journey. And He gives them a promise. He will go ahead of them to smooth the way and He will also come behind and be their rear guard. In the KJV that word is acaph, which means to “destroy, leave behind, remove.” He promises Israel that He will go before them and clear the way and He will go after them, assuring their safety.
This is all the assurance we need as we move ahead into 2021. As we step out in faith to do His will we will be amazed to find that as we remain focused on Him that He has already prepared the way for us and assured us that He is protecting our flank. We, like Israel leaving Babylon and returning to Jerusalem, are headed to our home, the New Jerusalem. But while He is leading and guarding us, we have the responsibility to keep moving and not be slowed down by reliving the past. We can’t afford to let our eagerness for what God has in store for us in 2021 to be affected by any anxiety resulting from focusing on the past; past failures, past regrets, past losses, pandemics, etc. Yesterday is gone and we can’t change it so let’s not waste any of today’s time worrying about it or continuing to live in its successes.
All of our focus needs to be on the path ahead as God shows us the way. He is our security for yesterday and our security for tomorrow. And that’s why He tells us not go out with haste. If we get focused on the future at the expense of today we are sure to miss the challenges, the blessings, and the opportunities of today. We can’t change our yesterdays and God and only God is in charge of our tomorrows.
I like what Oswald Chambers said: Let the past sleep, but let it sleep on the bosom of Christ. Leave the irreparable past in His hands, and step out into the irresistible future in Him.