In his book, “The Last Arrow”, Erwin McManus expounds on Luke 9:57-62 with the observation, “Jesus clearly imparted to all of His disciples: You cannot follow me into the future if you are holding on to your past.” I wonder how many of us are hamstrung in seeking to do new things within God’s Kingdom because we are refusing to let go of the past?
We’ve been holding onto some things so long we don’t even realize we’re doing it. They have simply become an extension of who we are. If we want to move into a future containing all God has for us, we’ve got to stop dragging the past along with us. The past simply has no place in the future. It’s too bulky and gets in the way.
There is value in the past. We do well to learn from both our failures and successes. But it’s over. No matter what happened, it’s time to move on. There’s a new day tomorrow, and an even newer one after that. Adventure awaits! What might God have for you when you open your eyes tomorrow morning? Have you ever gone to sleep with such an imaginative thought? Have you ever woken in such an excited frame of mind? In Isaiah 43:19, God encourages us to look, because He is doing something new! Don’t you want to be a part of it? I know I do!
Jesus is coming again. One way or the other, those who have placed their trust and belief in Him will come face to face with the King of Glory, the Creator of the universe. This is something to which we should all be looking forward. The day is coming. As it’s in the future, we should be doing all we can to bring it closer every day. But we can’t be striving for the future while at the same time holding onto the past. What is it you need to let go of to lighten the load and move forward? Are you holding onto relationships or activities keeping you from fully devoting your life to Jesus? Are you refusing to give up financial security in order to go all in with God? Perhaps there are dreams you don’t want to risk dying by handing them over to Christ. Whatever you are holding on to from the past, you’ve got to cut it loose to see what God has for you in the future.
Let go of the past. Today is a new day, a day for fresh discoveries and realizations. New relationships are waiting to be formed. New dreams are looking to be born. People all over the world could be impacted by the new thing God is giving you to do. But you’ll never do it if you are hanging onto the past, hanging onto what you’ve always known, and the way things have always been. It’s time to move on. It’s time to let go of the past and step into the brand-new future awaiting us all.