Robert Griffith | 4 May 2024
Robert Griffith
4 May 2024

 

Isaiah 43:19  “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”

It has seemed like a wilderness to the majority of us over the course of the past few years! During a pandemic that was combined by social, economic, and political turmoil, there was a great deal of loss and suffering. Who isn’t eager to start over, to leave the past behind and make a new beginning of their life? I think that’s what makes this promise from God in Isaiah so promising!

In the previous verse, the prophet Isaiah writes, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.” We should all shout ‘amen!’ to that.

Yet, I’ve found that one of the mental games our enemy likes to use against us is to cause us to remember the things we ought to forget and forget the things we should remember. It’s the devil’s way to keep us stuck in the past and living in hell on earth. Part of living longer is accumulating a past. Have you made peace with your past? We all have past regrets, past failures, and hurts that threaten to derail us from moving forward into the irresistible future that God has for us. They leave us living in a dry and barren desert!

One of the paradoxes of Scripture that, on the surface, appears as a contradiction is when we read in one passage that we are to “remember the former days” and in another passage to “forget the former things….” The point is that there are things God wants us to remember, as well as things we should forget. In his wonderful devotional, My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers says it so well:

“Our yesterdays present irreparable things to us; it is true that we have lost opportunities which will never return, but God can transform this destructive anxiety into a constructive thoughtfulness for the future. 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 with Him.”

God wants to move you from a desert of regret to an oasis of blessing! Look back on the good things God has done for you, the grace He has shown you, but then set your gaze ahead to what lies before you. And, when the enemy reminds you of your irreparable past, just remind him of his imminent future! I believe God wants you to receive this promise today from His Word. I pray it will encourage and challenge you as it does me!

Isaiah 43:18-19  “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.”

This promise reminds me of the sign that says, “Stop looking back, you’re not going that way.”That sign describes those people who are stuck in the past, looking in the rear-view mirror. You can’t really see where you’re going if you keep looking behind you.  While it’s important to glance in the rear-view mirror, we need to put our gaze ahead looking through the windshield so we can see where God is leading us.

God has a glorious hope and a future for you. Too often, though, we buy the lie that our failures are the final story and believe the fake news that our past disqualifies us from God’s purpose today. The truth is, God’s purpose is the final story, not our failures! The Bible says, “… it is the LORD’S purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21b (NIV)