Wednesday, July 1, 2009

No Turning Back...

Written by Monica Hernandez on July 1, 2009

Last Sunday, at church, we sang the chorus “I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back...” and it was a rousing start for the service. And though that was not the only chorus we sang, that one about “no turning back” stayed with me for a long time.

Did you ever notice that some of these choruses have a way of touching our emotions differently to the way the older hymns do? I love the old hymns like “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” and “Blessed Assurance” and others like that. When we sing those songs they transport us to a certain mood or atmosphere of worship that cannot be denied, yet when we sing the choruses, they do their own work by putting us into a more zesty mood for the Lord - a mood more for vigilance, more spiritual motivation and feelings like that.

And after we sang and I sat listening to the sermon, “No Turning Back” stayed with me even till after church and it moved my mind into many places. It took me to the Old Testament story of Lot and his wife, fleeing cities about to be destroyed and Lot’s wife looked back. The Bible says she looked back from behind Lot and turned into a pillar of salt. I believe that story holds some principles for us in a practical way - more than just an Old Testament account of something that happened.

Today, being led out of the bondage of what the world offers, we could very well be in the position of Lot’s wife if we look back and yield to the temptations we are leaving behind, because of its appealing sights and sounds or because of a memory that is enticing and overwhelming. The sights and sounds seem fresh in memory and we might long to experience those memories again.

What can we do about that? We can deal with those thoughts and feelings by renouncing them, casting down those imaginations that seek to exalt themselves (2 Corinthians 10:5.

I thought too about the children of Israel in the wilderness, regretting that they had left Egypt where there were many good things to eat, despite the fact they would have been in bondage to a harsh taskmaster. And I wondered about us singing “No Turning Back” in such in a zesty way - how many of us really gave thought and commitment to what we were singing?

Once you have given your life to Christ and He begins leading you in His way, is there something worthwhile to turn back to? In the world with all its appeal, is it worth it to turn back to what goes on there? The truth is that there is nothing worhwhile. Why turn back and have to face the bondage, troubles and deceit of this world alone?

It is true we yet live in the world, and though our Master said: “I am in the world but not of it; I have overcome the world,” we cannot say that to a full extent - not to the extent Jesus could say it, but the beauty of it all is that “in Christ” we can say the same thing - only in Him. In company with Him and through Him, and not wanting to turn back to what this world offers, we could say that we are overcomers, till our Father’s plan is fulfilled and it becomes an actuality.

THOUGHT FOR TODAY: On my spiritual journey, my motto shall be: “Ever forward, never backward.”

PRAYER: “Dear Lord, help me to keep my gaze on you, following wherever you may lead me. Amen.”


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