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Don’t Look Back

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Jennifer LeClaire

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Don’t look back:
Three words that together make up what I believe is a timely prophetic
utterance for the body of Christ in this hour. Let me write them again: Don’t
look back
.

Many are
carrying hurts and wounds from the past. We don’t shake them off and come up
higher because we keep looking back to the people and circumstances that
crushed our hearts. Instead of allowing the Holy Spirit to use the injustice to
propel us to places of greater authority in the kingdom like Joseph did, we
rehearse our past in our own minds like a scratched CD.

Out of the abundance of
the bitterness and resentment in our hearts, our mouth speaks poison that
defiles us. And we remain less than effective in proclaiming the kingdom of God
because we won’t bury the dead and say farewell to the past. The good news is,
Jesus is our past, present and future healer.

Others are
paralyzed by the past. We’ve become spiritual paraplegics, so to speak, unable
to move forward because fear of an unpleasant history repeating itself has
gripped our souls. We’ve given up on the dreams that God has put in our hearts
because of a traumatic life event arranged by the evil one who comes to steal,
kill and destroy. We are afraid to pursue the prophetic promises the Lord has
spoken over our lives, sometimes more than once. Like Lot’s wife, we continue
looking back at the death and destruction and figuratively turn into a pillar
of salt, frozen in time. The good news is, Jesus came to loose us from our
spiritual paralysis.

Then there’s
shame, a spiritual disease that’s running rampant in the body of Christ because
of past sin. Because we don’t understand the heart of the Father, we wallow in
a stew of guilt and condemnation and feel unworthy to move out into the things
of God. When Jesus said, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back
is fit for the kingdom of God,” I don’t believe He was condemning someone who
looked back. I believe He was warning us of the danger of looking back. Why?
Because looking back makes us spiritually unfit for kingdom work. By looking
back, we are essentially putting God’s kingdom off until tomorrow. Faith is
now. The good news is, Jesus bore all our shame and all our sin so we can
repent and move forward in the grace of God.


Yes, there is
such a thing as looking back to past victories to encourage ourselves in the
Lord like David did. But other than for purposes of glorifying His name,
looking back has little value—and it can rob our peace, our joy and even our
destiny. I’m reminded of Kathryn Kuhlman’s teaching on the Beatitudes. She
taught that when God created man in His own image and after His likeness, He
created man with a forward look, with a pair of eyes that would constantly be
looking forward and not backward.

“By looking
backward instead of forward, we bring on ourselves much of our distress, our
unhappiness, our frustration, our confusion, our lack of peace. … It seems the
easiest thing in the world to do is to live in the past,” Kuhlman said. “When
we live in the past, there are and will be regrets. We see the nurturing of
hurt feelings. There will be thoughts of injustice, there will be memories of
things that should be buried and forgotten. We are reluctant to loose our hold
on the past and hesitate to start living in the future. As a result, instead of
joy and adventure, we know only the pangs of remorse, and we never have peace
of mind.”

My past has seen
plenty of heartache and sorrow—and I am sure that in your own life you’ve
experienced some of the same. I have had to learn by the grace of God to let go
of the past, to walk toward the future by the power of God. I can tell you that
I would be living a life of defeat if I did not resist the temptation to relive
the abandonment, abuse and losses I’ve experienced. I have made many mistakes
in this life, and I have received many wrongs by people who were as close to me
as anyone could get. I had to make it my determined purpose to move on. The
secret to moving forward is to repent, forgive and press on.

Again, the Lord
is saying to you, “Don’t look back.” It’s not only prophetic, it’s scriptural.
In closing, consider the words of the apostle Paul, who had to forgive himself
for religious mistakes and forgive others for trespasses against him:


“Not that I have
already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold
of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 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, I press toward the goal for the prize of the
upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:12-14, emphasis added).

Receive this
insight today and run the race toward your prophetic destiny unburdened by the
past. When you cross the finish line, Jesus will be there to reward you as a
good and faithful servant who spent their energy building the kingdom instead
of allowing the devil to destroy their peace.

About the
author:
Jennifer LeClaire is news editor at Charisma. She
is also the author of several books, including
The Heart of the Prophetic. You
can e-mail Jennifer at
[email protected] or visit her website at jenniferleclaire.org.

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