Beware the past…
At age 61 just two years before his death from kidney failure C.S. Lewis wrote In a letter to a friend, “We must beware of the past, mustn’t we? …This is one of the dangers of being, like you and me, old. There’s so much past, now, isn’t there? And so little else. But we must try very hard not to keep on endlessly chewing the cud.”
Waxing nostalgic, consolidating one’s lifetime, is a typical phase of human experience in later years. For those whose hope is in this life only the temptation is great to live in one’s past, retelling the old stories again and again, in efforts to glean self-worth and life-purpose from them.
But Lewis is correct, for the Christian this indulgence holds a danger. “There’s so much past, now,” writes Lewis, “And so little else.” But he knows better. Little left of this life, certainly. But the believer is only now about to be born. Eternity which all his life has ached in his heart* is now about to be actualized.
There’s no stopping this. For the lost this fact should strike terror, “a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire” (Heb. 10:27), but the believer should be “filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy” (1 Pet. 1:8). Looking ahead to this should occupy his thoughts and desires more and more. Do not let nostalgia turn your thoughts backward.
“We carry our mortality about with us,” wrote Augustine, “You arouse us so that praising you may bring us joy, because you have made us and drawn us to yourself, and our heart is unquiet until it rests in you.”
We need to encourage one another as we draw to the end of this age, en masse or each in our time. Scripture urges us, “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Heb. 10:23-25)
Fellowship. None of us was meant to walk this pilgrimage alone. Together we all follow one Lord and we all form one body. We are all one in Christ (see Rom. 12:5; Gal. 3:28). You need your local family of God and they need you. Encourage… be encouraged. Don’t look back… Grow in God!
“Jesus replied, ‘No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.’” (Luke 9:62).
Join us as we gather and grow together in God by seeking His Face and sitting under His Word… confessing and ministering to God and to one another.
“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1)
Are you interested in being discipled one-on-one in the fundamentals of new life in Christ? Or, perhaps you would you like to know how to begin this journey and take the very first of the First Steps by turning from your current path and committing your path to Christ? — Use the Contact page and we’ll get you started.
* God has “set eternity in the human heart” (Ecclesiastes 3:11).
This week at Lincoln Baptist Church you have a wonderful opportunity to seek the Lord. Join us for the Sermonindex Revival Conference — in person, or online. Go to the Lincoln Baptist Church website for details