I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead. (Philippians 3:13)
Paul is a genius. In chapter 3 of Philippians and into chapter 4 he’s taking into account everything he knows, has, and experiences he’s been through. He does everything from comparing his knowledge to dung/rubbish, to saying he’s not the best at everything, but one thing he’s really good at is forgetting what’s behind him, and straining for what’s ahead. It got me thinking about how we all react to losing something or someone in our lives. Offense can set in or simple life changes can draw people a part. Staffing adjustments, downsizing or poor performance can lead to layoffs. Inflation, health issues, economic crises or a dozen other things can play into a poor financial situation. Constant bickering, growing kids, the stresses of life can put members of a family at odds. How do we handle it when we lose something? How are we adjusting to life once everything changes? Forget about it and count it as a loss.
It’s not to say forget about it because it wasn’t valuable or even useful, but rather let it go because as one quote said, “There are far better things ahead than those left behind.” (Unknown) We tend to focus on what we’ve lost instead of what we’ve gained. The guy walks away from the relationship and ultimately breaks your heart. You sit around and think of all the good times, how much you liked/loved him and analyze to death how perfect you all were together. Instead, you should thank God that it ended. Yes, I said it, thank the good Lord that He loved you enough to get you out of something that, in time, you’ll see wasn’t the best thing for you anyway. The same goes with a job, a financial status change, and any other scenario where you experienced some of abrupt loss or change.
Focus on the positive. Trust that God is sovereign and not only saw this coming, but also allowed it to happen. Even more than allowing it, He’s made provision for you to get through it. Yes, you lost your job but what did you gain? You’ve gained the freedom to pursue your real dream perhaps, or an open door to a better opportunity than what you had before. Yes he broke up with you and obliterated your heart in the process, but what did you gain? You’ve gained insight into yourself, and into that other person after all, why would you want to be with someone who doesn’t want to be with you anyway? Think of it as a blessing, not a loss. Now you are free to be discovered by someone who actually wants you in his life. Cheers to you! I know this sounds counter to our way of thinking, but I believe that’s a little bit of what Paul said he has perfected. Letting go of what’s already done, it’s over, it threatened to end you but it didn’t, you thought you wouldn’t make it, but you have!
Look forward to what lies ahead. Ultimately our main focus and goal is the Grand Prize, which is Jesus Christ, but in the meantime appreciate the small “gains” you get to experience day to day. So the next time you are tempted to slump into depression after making your laundry list of what you’ve seemingly lost, stop and insert all that you have gained. It is guaranteed to change the way you see the obstacles that life tries to throw your way. It will all work out for your good anyway. There are far better things ahead! #Gains
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,[a] for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)