How to Move Forward in Your Life

Dwelling on past mistakes and regrets is not a good strategy for moving on

Posted in , Apr 26, 2016

How to move forward, not dwell on past mistakes and regrets.

When my son Paul was young, we would watch his favorite movie Back to the Future together over and over again. In this 1980’s sci-fi classic, Marty McFly, a teenager from a small town in California travels back in time to the ‘50s when an experiment by his friend, Doc Brown, goes terribly wrong. 

As Marty travels through time, he encounters younger versions of his parents and must make sure that they fall in love, or he'll cease to exist. Even more daring, Marty has to return to his own time and save Doc’s life.

This movie appeals to people of all ages as it taps into our imagination. It makes us ponder, “What if I could go back in time and change things–would I?” I think most of us would.

Maybe we would go back to a decision we regretted and change it. Maybe we would travel to a time when things were better. But we can’t. That may leave us confined by regrets, missed opportunities and memories that stop us from moving forward emotionally and spirituality.

The truth is that we don’t know how things would have turned out if we had made different choices in the past.

Life is not a straight line, it is filled with highs and lows and looking back never moves us forward.

In the Exodus story, people fled Egypt breaking free from slavery. But when they found themselves sandwiched between the Red Sea and Pharaoh’s Army, they saw no way out and wished they were back in Egypt. Little did they know that the blessing was in moving forward, not in looking back.

God pushed them forward beyond their doubts, fears and comfort zone and opened a new path through the Red Sea. Moving forward in faith is about trusting God to make a path in desolate places.

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God makes a way when our past weighs us down; we are forgiven, and the guilt is removed. When we are in despair, we are reminded, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me.”

So instead of looking back…press forward. What keeps you moving forward? Please share with us.

Lord, help me to look and move forward believing that You will make a way.

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