Thursday, November 17, 2022

Press In and Press On

Thursday, November 17, 2022 

Not that I have already obtained it, or have already become perfect, but I press on in order that I may lay hold of that for which 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

Press In and Press On

If we were to be honest… both forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead can be hard. We can easily get entangled in the messes we have made and let them hold us back. 

We can also get slowed down by fear of the future, all the “what ifs,” and unknowns.  We can get so wrapped up in what might happen tomorrow or down the road that we miss today. There are things God is calling us to do today. Right now. We can miss His calling for today because we are either looking back or fearing the future.

God never intends for us to be stuck in the past – or held back by past mistakes and bad choices. He also never intends for us to be paralyzed in fear of the future. We have this beautiful freedom in Him. He has forgiven our past and has taken care of our future. All He asks is that we trust Him – trust Him in the salvation He gives from all past sin and mistakes and trust Him with all the unknowns of the future. He broke the chains. He opened the prison doors. He sets the captive free. We are free, but whatever we allow ourselves to be captive to will hold us back. He is already in our tomorrows, and any problem we can imagine, He already has solved. He just asks us to trust Him.

Here Paul says to “Press on…”  Look at these definitions of the word “press.”

To move or cause to move into a position of contact with something by exerting continuous physical force. – When we try to press on – we will bump up against resistance that is working to keep us from pressing on.

To apply pressure to (something) to flatten, shape, or smooth it, typically by ironing. – We will definitely experience some pressure when we press on.

Pressing on will not feel good some days, and it may even be a little painful. We use it to rally the troops, and to encourage each other (which is absolutely good!), but when we press on, we can be sure that we will be pressed in two ways.

We will be pressed by God – as He shapes us and molds us for His purpose and His glory. To press on there will be some things that need to go – that need to be pressed out of us. There will be some pressing by God to mold us and there will have to be some good ol pressing to get us to move at all some days.

Satan will surely press us as we try to move forward. He wants us to be held back by our past, our mistakes, or bad choices, and by our fear of the future. This fear keeps us from stepping out in faith and landing in the good things God has planned for us. We don’t give up the good because we are afraid. But God wants us to let go of the” good” to have what He has for us – the better. 

No matter how hard it is to press on, there is one thing we cannot do – we cannot lose faith. If we lose faith, we cannot press on. We can hold onto our faith by pressing into Him. Press in and press on. 

This is such a beautiful picture of the only we can make it through this life, pressing into Him for all we need, and pressing on in His strength and power. This is where the “mature” part comes in. Let those of us who are mature think this way… As we grow in Christ, and by some trial, and a lot of error, we realize that pressing into Him is the only thing. It is the only thing that brings peace, makes us feel safe, satisfies the longing of our souls, and anything else we ask the world to give us. Only pressing into Him gives us what we need and truly want. And it is the only thing that will give us the strength to press on to complete the journey to reach the goal – the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus – the prize of all prizes. Focus on the goal to achieve this upward call, not the past, not the unknown future, and not the circumstances surrounding you.

Eyes on the prize, press in, and press on.


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