With the New Year here, I’d like to challenge all of us with some helpful insights as traveling companions. It’s one thing to take time and evaluate the year as a whole but quite another to make an attempt each day to to live deliberately and intentionally. The purpose of these “devotionals” and questions will be to simply guide your steps and help you at the end of the year to be able to reflect more effectively and to be able to know with confidence that you have done all you intended to do each day of the year.
With the New year upon us, it’s often tempting to hurry into the year and quickly try to get past the past. What happens is that unless we really deal with the past, we don’t get past it but bring it into the New Year with us. One thing is for sure, we cannot escape ourselves!
16 This is what the LORD says:
Stand by the roadways and look.
Ask about the ancient paths:
Which is the way to what is good?
Then take it
and find rest for yourselves.
But they protested, “We won’t!”
Read through that verse again and look at the response of the people: We won’t! In what ways have you been ignoring some of your past? In what ways have you tried to simply escape the past and instead found it with you even now?
Even though Paul admonishes us to look forward and press on to the prize of the high calling of God (Philippians 3: 13-14), he also reminds us that the past has been and is still something often used to teach us. It has extreme value!
4 For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.
Questions To Consider
At my current age, who were some major players in scripture? What were they doing at my age now?
What was I doing 10 years ago that I need to still be doing? What needs to change because it’s outdated?
Have I left my first love?
What was my best day last year? How can I make today my best day this year?
What was my greatest failure last year? How can I apply wisdom from that event to move forward this year?
What do I expect to continue?
How can I expect or anticipate the unexpected?
Are there any ancient practices I want to adopt from scripture or my heritage?
What have I been bringing from my past that I need to leave in the past?
What things from my past do I never want to change?