Forward & Upward. Pt. 1, Getting Clear for the New Year

Pressing Forward. Moving Upward. Part One - Getting Clear for the New Year

Download Worksheet:http://www.newcovenant.org/Pressing_Forward_Worksheet.pdf

Philippians 3:12 Not that I have already attained or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you. 

A new year is an opportunity, if you are focused on making progress and making a difference. If your focus is on settling, a new year is just another day.

Charles Dickens “A Tale of Two Cities” which I never read, begins with a famous sentance set in London and Paris during the French Revolution in the late 1790’s.

Dickens's famous opening sentence introduces the universal approach of the book, the French

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way—in short, the period was so far like the present period,”

It is always easier to remember the “worst of times,” but I challenge you to think about the “best of times.” You always have a choice, so choose wisely.

It is very important that you not focus on the “worst of times” even though you may have to deal the aftermath.

Champion athletes have the ability to forget about losses and mistakes, while learning from it. They quickly detach themselves from those things and focus forward. (Show Scanlon Video)

This is why Paul said: “But one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead…”

You too are a champion in God’s Kingdom!

Fear is the expectation of danger and harm. FEAR False Evidence Appearing Real 

“God has not given me a spirit of fear, but power, love, and a sound mind”

Three Keys for Getting Clear for the New Year: POWER, PERSPECTIVE, PRIZE

Paul reminded us a about POWER = “…That I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me..” 

You were designed by God to possess everything he designed for you to have.”

Paul gave us a PERSPECTIVE = I am not perfected, but I press on. I don’t focus on what I cannot do, I focus on what I can do. I am reminded of the manager who would not take his pitcher out of the game, even though he been pitching poorly. A couple of inning later he caught fire and began to strike out batters. In the post game, a reporter asked him “why did you leave him in the game when do was doing poorly.” The manager said, “I was not looking at he was not doing. I was looking at what he was going to do.”

Paul gave us a PRIZE = The upward or high call of God. This is kind of like the Christmas season as a child. Whatever else may have happened, the child looks forward to Christmas day and opening of gifts. It is kind of prize for the emotions.

Pressing forward for the prize of God’s purpose in your life, helps you put everything else in perspective. It’s like my wife and looking forward to returning to Hawaii for our 40 wedding anniversary. We last went for our 25th wedding anniversary. We all need something to look forward to.

What to Get Clear for the New Year:

All of this can be done through prayer and a quality decisions to act by faith.

A quality decision is the thing that gets done because you are committed to it. Like I also tell you, if someone ask you to do something and you say, “I’ll try” or “I might try” that is a non-quality decision. The Bible says “let your yes be yes, or no be no.” Matt 5:37, Just say a simple, 'Yes, I will,' or 'No, I won't.' Anything beyond this is from the evil one.

  1. The hindrance of self-imposed limitations resulting from broken principles and neglect of the Kingdom of God. Much of what impedes our progress has to do with neglecting a key principle or tolerating a condition that we can change. Not praying. Not giving. Not serving, etc.
  2. The pain and disappointment introduced by difficult and draining situations
  3. The shackles of low expectation introduced by “apparent” failure
  4. The residue of bad encounters, disrespectful, and missed opportunities
  5. The feeling of worthlessness resulting from a lack of engagement with the Lord and with your purpose
  6. The sense of being drained by debts and unnecessary expenses. Form your plan to retire debts and eliminate unneccessary expenses
  7. Determine to move straight ahead. Beware of situations that demand you to not run "straight ahead.” Philippians 3:14 So I run straight toward the goal in order to win the prize, which is God's call through Christ Jesus to the life above. (Good News Translation)
  8. Do a “So What” exercise (From Paul Scanlon)

Make a statement then ask yourself at the end of it, “SO WHAT?” 

“He was disrespectful to me ...SO WHAT?” 

“They don’t appreciate me...SO WHAT?” 

“I failed in that area...SO WHAT?”

“I missed that opportunity.. SO WHAT?” 

“I’ll never be included...SO WHAT?”

“I’m afraid of this new season..SO WHAT?” 

Your ‘SO WHATS’ will help you realize that it’s not worth doing drama about so many things. 

“Greater is He who is in you that He who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4

Philippians 3:12 Not that I have already attained or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you.

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