It seems that with each passing year we feel that time is just flying.
All of us admit that in 2014 we failed in many ways and we made many mistakes.
But that should not pull us down or dampen our spirits for welcoming Year 2015.
We see every year brings choices, changes, challenges and crises.
As we look to the year 2015 two things become clear to us.
1. There is nothing we can do to change what happened in 2014.
2. We can learn some important lessons from last year’s experiences and move on.
Apostle Paul had a great attitude in his life dealing with what life brought to his plate.
As we face 2015, we may follow Paul’s guidance in these few verses.
Four guidelines stand out clearly in this passage.
Verse 12 has reflected on verses 10 & 11.
To know the power of HIS resurrection
To participate in HIS suffering
To become like HIM in HIS death
To attain resurrection from the dead like Christ
He was willing to apply pressure on himself to become a useful tool in Christ’s hand.
Press on can be pushing forward – implies pressure on one’s self.
So long as we live here on the earth we are under pressure always but we press on.
Pressures related to disappointments, temptations, financial and family.
The Christian needs to press on to obtain what Paul was trying to obtain.
FORGETTING AND REACHING FORWARD
Verse 13 “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”
Forgetting our past mistakes and sinful nature is required to move forward in life.
Forgetting implies that we need to let go some thing of the past.
If not the pain of the past will drag us from moving forward.
If our pain was the result of some sin in our life, we need to seek the Lord’s forgiveness before we move on.
We cannot move on with sin corrupting our thinking and way of life.
We have to learn from our own experience and past mistakes.
We must pray for strength and help from God to forget those things in 2014.
In all relationships the only way for the necessary healing to take place is to forget and move forward.
14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
God calls every believer in Christ toward the ultimate destination – to win the prize – eternity with Christ Jesus.
That is what Apostle Paul pressing toward the future goal of heaven with Christ.
15 All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you.
Paul is encouraging us as mature Christians to set our mind on that prize.
If there is any confusion on the road, God will make it clear as we move on in life.
WALKING IN FAITH
16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.
We understand that walking involves - action toward a destination.
We are at the edge of 2015 - no idea what it has for every one of us
We need to exercise our faith in the all-powerful God, in HIS unfailing promises and in HIS unchanging character.
Paul is saying simply to live up to our spiritual potential as mature Christians.
In order to walk in faith we have to walk by faith.