Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
      Philippians 3:13-14

The Apostle Paul’s words provide great content for meditation on New Year’s Day. “Lord, help me to forget what is behind and strain toward what is ahead. Help me to press on toward the goal with purpose and faith.”

Forgetting What is Behind
Let’s not become entangled by memories of the past that keep us from pursuing the future. Those memories may be of failures, physical or emotional trauma, or successes. All can arrest our focus and keep us from looking forward. “Lord, keep me ever forward looking!”

Straining Toward What is Ahead
The word translated “straining” really means “to reach forth” or “to stretch forth.” I see that my previous prayer was a bit too weak! I don’t want to just be “forward looking,” I want to be “forward reaching.” “Lord, give me a pursuing heart that urges me forward in Christ Jesus. Lord, I don’t want to be satisfied with who I am today. I know that one of the prizes You have for me is more of Yourself – a life lived more in oneness with You. And that will make me a way better person than I am today. Papa, help me to grow in You in 2009.”

Happy 2009 all! May God bless you with His presence and keep you in good health throughout the year.

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