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Embracing any heavenly viewpoint and putting it to work while functioning in this life is a wellspring of divine possibilities, in that it furnishes us with the capacity to live with joy and vigour of true satisfaction as we establish notable successes, while pursuing our various goals in our field of vocation and justly, in fulfilling our glorious destiny in Christ Jesus. Interestingly, the zeal and decency of keeping in touch with what lies ahead ultimately comes from within and not from the convenience of circumstances. And this wisdom can always protect the heart from all sorts of distraction when graciously applied.

Reference: Philippians 3:14-15 New International Version (NIV) "I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you."

One of the great excitements of pressing toward the goal of actualising what is ahead is that it is God's perfect will for you, and its pleasant and joyful at the end because it brings a great sense of fulfilment due to new accomplishments. Now does it mean that past accomplishments don't count? Are they a waste? Not at all! Here's the point: God is a God of progress. The same God who designed and created us anew in Christ, assuring us that old things have passed away, is the God who tells us in Isaiah 43:18-19 saying, "Forget about what's happened; don't keep going over old history. Be alert, be present. I'm about to do something brand-new. It's bursting out! Don't you see it? There it is!..." (MSG). Notice that He guides us into and through the greater heights and future by this timeless instruction. Sometimes the new things may not happen immediately or become instinctively apparent, but God wants you to prepare your mind for it ahead of time and leave the past alone.

This is the reason the Scripture tells you to strictly guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life (Proverbs 4:23 NLT). Did you notice that the reason for this Solomonic instruction is for progress and reaching out towards a great future? The latter part says, "for it determines the course of your life", meaning that you require your mind and heart to be disciplined in order to press on toward what lies ahead. Guarding the heart with all diligence will cause you to say no to "dwelling on the past." It will also position you to focus on the main goals of your pursuit which will count well into the future - in the pathway of your purpose. As you say no to temporary pleasures and enticements, the overall result or outcome in the long run will be far from any form of regret because, like apostle Paul, you'll be overwhelmed with the joy and pleasantness of greater accomplishments.

This is exactly how apostle Paul's journey ended: "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith" (2 Timothy 4:7 NIV). Why? It's because he paid the price of pursuing what really mattered to his calling, which is "pressing on toward the goal to win the heavenly prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." And beloved, he wants us to have the same mindset and attitude in order to attain the most enjoyable or rewarding pinnacle of our Christian journey's experiences, both in our faith walk and diverse endeavours. Therefore, if you have to discipline yourself to accomplish the needful, do so without reservation because Hebrews 12:11 says, "No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening - it's painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way" (NIV).

Indeed Pauline confession in today's referenced verses commands respect and high regard for lasting success and durable impression. This is why he urged as many as are sound in the faith, to be so minded. If you are reading this article and you're otherwise minded, I pray God would open your mind to this extraordinary viewpoint. Stay tuned for part 3. Shalom!

Scripture Reading - Isaiah 65:17; 1 Corinthians 2:9-10; Hebrews 3:1; 1 Corinthians 9:24.

Guided Prayer: Gracious Father, I thank you for the enabling grace to be apt in making progress in Christ Jesus. By hearkening to the instructions from your Word and refusing to lean on the past, I become wise and full of divine understanding, thereby embracing and actualising the dictates and ordinances of my divine purpose and proving them to be true in my life through the empowering influence of your Spirit, in Jesus' Name, Amen!


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