Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Paul’s Strategy for Success (Part 3)

Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 3:12-14
What is your aim? Are you certain? A certainty of aim has to do with life focus and the things we pursue each day.  Paul was saying, “I have found my calling, and I am in hot pursuit of fulfilling my purpose.”  I know what God wants me to do, and I spend my time, my energy, my resources and strength in the pursuit of that purpose. Fulfilling the purpose of God was Paul’s passion. It was that for which he lived.  What is the driving passion of your life?
  • Strategy number 2 - Have a certainty of aim.  but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. v.12b
A story is told of a greyhound racing dog. Until a few years ago, the greyhounds were euthanized when they got too old to race. They were no good for breeding and too old to race. A group of ladies started an adoption agency whose sole purpose was to find good homes for these dogs. A dog whisperer’s daughter adopted one of the greyhounds. When he visited her home at Thanksgiving, she showed her father the beautiful greyhound she had adopted. After dinner, he went in the backyard to visit with the dog. He asked the dog, “Greyhound, how are you doing? Did you ever race in Miami? Did you ever win? The stately greyhound responded, “Life is good! I have a big yard to play in, three square meals a day and an owner who loves me.” He continued, “Yes, I ran in Miami and won five times!” The man asked, “Did you get too old to run?” The stately greyhound responded, “No, I quit.” The man asked further, “Why did you quit?” The greyhound called him a little closer and said, “I found out the rabbit wasn’t real.”
Many “rabbits” in the world are not real. We are constantly being bombarded with things trying to claim our attention, so we must have a certainty of aim. Be careful what you spend your time chasing.
  • Strategy Number 3: Pull the curtains on the past. This one thing I do... forgetting what lies behind. Philippians 3:13
One of the greatest weights that hold us back from moving forward with freedom is our past.  Paul would not allow his past to prevent him from fulfilling his purpose.  Even though others could not forget, he would not let their opinion of him keep him from being who God had made him to be.  We must not allow our past to keep us from our future.
Paul’s attitude seemed to be that the past was real and needed to be acknowledged.  It happened. Mistakes were made, and he was sorry. He had repented and forsaken his sin. It was over and he rejoiced that his sins were covered by the blood of Jesus. The old “Saul” was dead. He was a new creature in Christ Jesus; forgiven and delivered.
Satan has a way of bringing up our past failures, mistakes and sins.  He tries to condemn us with the mistakes of the past.  They are called "skeletons” in our closets because they are dead and they need to be buried.  A part of your strategy in going forward must include pulling the curtains on your past. Your mistakes, sins, shortcomings and other skeletons, are behind you, so forget them all!  Take a text, eulogize those bones, and lay them to rest!
Jesus came, suffered, bled and died as penalty for the sins of the world. You have been forgiven. You are free to go! Go into your future! Go fulfill your purpose in Jesus name! You are free!

Scripture to Claim:

In freedom Christ has made us free [and completely liberated us]; stand fast then, and do not be hampered and held ensnared and submit again to a yoke of slavery [which you have once put off].  Galatians 5:1

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