Don’t Look Back

Every one of us has things from our past that are better left in the past. Broken relationships and broken hearts. Shattered dreams and missed opportunities. Wrongs done to us or wrongs done to others. There is a principle in Scripture which declares not to look back.

Don’t look back because that is not where you are going. The Lord Jesus said, “…No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God” (Luke 9:62).

Where you look is where you go. Stop looking back and wondering why you never get anywhere. The Lord God said, “Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing…” (Isaiah 43:18-19).

Don’t let your past be an anchor, but a steppingstone. “…forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal…” (Philippians 3:13-14).

There have been some things in my life that I want to put behind me, but they don’t want to stay there. Memories are a funny thing as they seem to have a mind of their own. We may not be able to stop a thought from entering our mind, but we don’t have to entertain it. We need to rebuke negative thoughts in the Name of Jesus, sending them right back into the past where we left them.

Remember your past, but keep your eyes fixed before you. “Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you” (Proverbs 4:25).

You have to end a chapter that you could begin a new one.

To the degree you hold onto the past, you cannot take hold of the future. “Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them” (Isaiah 42:9).

The enemy will try to convince you that you cannot overcome. The truth in all of Scripture is that the Lord will help you to overcome. Pray today for Him to help you and He will. “…He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). Won’t you believe with me today that your tomorrow can be better? Say goodbye to yesterday and see what God will do with that.

Let your past be your teacher but not your master. “…I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me” (Philippians 3:12).

Having a bitter heart is not dependent on your past, but only if you choose to remain there.

Bitterness is rooted in the past, watered in the present, but has no place in your future. “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God…Let all bitterness…be put away from you…” (Ephesians 4:30-31).

Often our past remains the anchor to our future. We may not be able to forget some things, but we can choose not to dwell on them. We cannot become who we are meant to be if we remain firmly planted in who we were. We need to learn to fear the barriers of our past more than the obstacles in our future. Never let your past rule your future, but the other way around.

One way to know who is talking to you is that Satan speaks of your past and God speaks of your future. “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).

People from your past will often try to keep you there. “…Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house'” (Matthew 13:57).

Sometimes God won’t part the sea until we trust Him to do it. “And the Lord said to Moses, ‘Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward'” (Exodus 14:15).

Sometimes we will look back to better days and the goodness of what we had before takes away from what we have today. Often, we glorify the very past that we complained about when we were there. Contentment is never found in our past or the future, but in the day.

You will miss the new things if you are only looking for the old. “Do not say, ‘Why were the former days better than these?’ For you do not inquire wisely concerning this” (Ecclesiastes 7:10).

Stop looking back, or you might miss all that God has before you. “But as it is written: ‘Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him” (1 Corinthians 2:9).

Blessings to you,

Paul Balius

All Scripture is quoted from the New King James Version unless otherwise noted. Please use the version you prefer to review the verses shown here. The best version is the one you read. An even better version is the one you live.


13 thoughts on “Don’t Look Back

  1. Dear Paul, I was reading about how you said the Holy Spirit would show you who He would bring to the alter and you were faithful to wait until the person came forward. I know that must be an unimaginable blessing to behold with your eyes and physically be a part of. Then I thought about how the Lord has moved you to a very different path… One where you have to go on faith that you are reaching that “one”. Well this “one” wants you to know I am so blessed by how God is using you to speak straight to this old gal at just the right moments at just the right time…God’s time! I am born again lover of our Lord Jesus Christ! I want so badly to know what my gifts are and to use them for His glory and I look forward to hearing from Holy Spirit through your combinations of scripture and instruction. God bless your work and you muchly! Julia R

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    1. Hello Julia, thank you so much for your kind words, this is such a blessing for me. I truly long to encourage others in their faith journey, those desiring the higher things from heaven. I remember for so many years pressing in and not yet attaining, but I just kept persevering. And I want you to know, I still press in for more! There is so much more. God wants us to walk in the fullness of the Holy Spirit. It requires no effort, only surrender, and it is there we must focus our attention. Even if He never gives a gift, when we have Him, we have everything! Praying for your ministry calling and all that the Lord is going to do through you. Willingness is always the first step to being used of God! Blessings to you!

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      1. yes it is. I fought so hard to do that by numbing out and running away. When I finally left it in the past, God began to open doors for me to use my broken past to glorify him through helping others going through similar experiences. But I had to leave it alone first.

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  2. Thank you Paul for this timely Word…. It is so true that Satan speaks of your past, and God speaks of your future! It is so God that I was experiencing sad feelings about my past today and then read this truth. This whole article has been very meaningful to me….. Thank you Jesus!

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    1. Thank you for your kind words Cindy. It is so amazing how much God wants us to look to Him and to keep our eyes looking forward. He has so much for us if we would only look to where He is taking us. Prayers for you on your journey. Blessings, Paul

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  3. This is right on time for me. I’ve been fretting over my past lately. Been praying that God would wipe it from my memory. Sean and I have discussed it, and he has tried to make me feel better about it by saying, “Remember, as Jesus was dying on that cross, he said, ‘Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do.’” And then Sean said, “Did you get that? They know not what they do. And why is that? Because they didn’t know Jesus. You didn’t know Jesus back then, and he died for you while you didn’t know him and were still sinning. The Bible tells us that in Romans 5:8. Stop living in the past because you’re not that person, you crucified her and became born again when you accepted Christ, and became a new creation.” And I did feel better, and then I read your post, and feel even better. Thanks!

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    1. Oh, my friend, I am so blessed to know you. What you wrote here I am sure so many can relate to, including myself. How I wish I could erase my memory such as we can erase the data from our computers. You have such a blessed and wise husband whose advice is rich with the wisdom from heaven. How wonderful it is when we can be set free from the bondage of our own thoughts, discovering the freedom we can have when we would see the freedom that Christ brought us. Blessings to you!

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  4. Very encouraging as usual & helps keep focus on where our help comes from. So many decide that living for the moment is the only way to avoid confusion of fears or regrets. Several of these have been on my mind & I’m glad I took time to read through this reassuring confirmation for more effective meditation. Thanks Paul.

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    1. Thank you, and that is a great point, that those that live for the moment often come to regret those very moments. We need to start living our life in a way we don’t have the need to look back in regret.

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