Friday, January 04, 2008

Pastors Need to Forget Too--

I am preparing for our annual Staff retreat that begins today and ends tomorrow. Feeling better after visit to Dr. and a needle shot in the thigh!

Preached from Phil 3:13 this past Sunday:
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,...

Stressed the need to forget and reach- these were the Apostle Paul's words- a man who had much to forget, i.e. the stoning of Steven, etc. Paul understood that forgetting and reaching are the keys to spiritual wholeness. One won't work without the other. Forgetting closes the door to your past; reaching opens the door to your future.

We must understand this: the only place the past can live is in your memory. The only power it has over you is the power you give it. You have to neglect it if you are going to forget it!

Forgetting- Greek word means to neglect- don’t feed it, to replay it over it- don’t allow it to control your every waking moment-

When I asked a woman about the tattoo on her arm, she explained, “My former boyfriend did it—he was an abusive alcoholic.” She was now happily married to another man, but every day she was reminded of the pain in her past. She would have preferred to remove the tattoo, but it was burned into her skin.

We have all met people whose past is tattooed onto their souls. We as Pastors often have tattoos on our souls because of offenses.

God in the last few months has allowed me to not only forgive but to forget! As I demonstrated Sunday before the congregation, I tore up files on betrayal. slander, the Devil's accusations-- I am free, now free to neglect them when they resurface!

Gen 41:51-52
Joseph named his firstborn Manasseh (forget) and said, "It is because God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father's household." The second son he named Ephraim (twice fruitful) and said, "It is because God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering."

Joseph was able to put the past behind and enter into the design, purposes, destiny that God intended for him. Had he not- had he stayed a victim and bitter it would have had serious ramifications for not only him, but the countries round about, and his immediate family. He received more than a double portion!

Pastor friend, how about you- it's a New Year, if not now when?


Ronni said...

Well, not a pastor right now but, wow. Yeah. This has been my theme... God has taken a few very God hearing and fearing people to tell me it's time to let go of EVERYTHING, and look ONLY towards the future. Forget every word spoken over me, and every act concocted... and not let that define me. It's time to let God define us and where we are going.

Thanks for the reminder Dave. Good one!

Pastor David said...

>ronni- what a delight to receive a comment from you- you're right- let God be our lives and shape them- not the words of man- Let God be true!