I am in a season where God is constantly asking me and reminding me to fix my focus on Him and Him alone. To fix my focus on the things He has said, the things He has done and those He has promised to do because forgetting is too easy. Too easy to look at a current crisis and forget who God was to me yesterday. Too easy to forget how He miraculously provided for me. Too easy to be overwhelmed by my current crisis and forget the joy that I once had in my salvation. I have found myself forgetting all these things. I have found myself doubting. Not doubting who God is because that is pretty clear. Doubting that God was willing to do it for me. Doubting His good thoughts towards me. Doubting. Just doubting. Too overwhelmed by a crisis that I failed to see His power and might.
It is too easy to doubt when thoughts are fixated on past failures, past illnesses, past wounds sometimes even past victories. It is impossible to see what God is doing and what He will do if your thoughts are constantly in the past. See if you keep remembering what happened, that means the past is the voice you listen to. The past becomes the voice you obey. Ultimately the past becomes your god.
I love Isaiah 43:18 where God says, ‘Forget the former the things, do not dwell in the past. See I am doing a new thing.’ For a long time I loved the verse but somehow did not feel like it was me that God was addressing. My eyes were fixed on what I was going through and what I had gone through. Everything and anything to disqualify me from hearing and owning what God was saying.
In that same verse God says in an astonished voice, ‘Do you not perceive it?’ When I read that verse I can feel His desperation for us to see what He is doing. For us to be present. But how can you perceive what God is doing when you live in the past? How can you even accept the new that God is bringing when you live in the past. Isaiah 43:18 is an emphasis on forgetting the former things. The verse is about not dwelling in the past. It is only when we are in that place that we can finally see the new that God is doing.
It was God’s will that the Israelites that He rescued from Egypt would see the promised land, but they did not. Every time there was a crisis they would complain and curse Moses for bringing them out of Egypt to kill them. In fact in Exodus 16:3, they said to Moses, ‘……Would that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the fleshpots and ate bread to the full; for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.’ What amuses me is that the Israelites say that when they were in Egypt they sat by fleshpots and ate bread to the full. This is obviously a lie because we know that they were slaves and we know how slaves live. But that besides the point. The point is that the Israelites forgot where God had brought them from and all that He had done to rescue them. They forgot that through God, they were no longer slaves.
They failed to see who God really was because their minds were in the past. Going through their entire journey you will realize that no matter what God did for them which was out of the mind kind of miracles but they still complained. They even begged to be returned back to Egypt. Eventually their mindsets prevented them from achieving what God had in mind for them. Now, it is easy to look at them and think what an ungrateful lot, but there is not a single one of us that God has not done great and mighty things for.
The only reason we will fail to see what He has done, what He is doing and what He will do is because our focus is somewhere else. The Bible is very clear about our walk with God. We shall not walk by sight but by faith. If your thoughts are on what happened in the past or what your currently going through, that’s your focus and you could miss out on the new He is doing.
Listen, the Lord is doing a new thing. Do you not perceive it?