Keep Stretching Forward
14” I press on toward the goal to win the [supreme and heavenly] prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.” Philippians 3:14 Amplified Bible
Moving forward in Jesus is a reoccurring theme with Paul. His desire was (as ours should be) to always be reaching forward for the things Jesus has prepared for us. Now in this verse, we are reminded again to always press onward. When I reach for something in the distance, it shows that I see the promise, even if it is afar off. As I reach for that promise of the Lord, I am stretching my hand, my whole arm in fact, and pointing my way onward. It is not enough to just know the direction of the promises and the Promised Land, I have to move in that direction, I have to press onward towards that goal.
I think again of Abraham who had the promise from God that He would be the father of many nations. Because of that, he moved forward in faith, even as the years went by with no evidence of the fulfillment. He had seen the promises “afar off” according to the Word. He could see them and even though he could not reach them he could stretch his hand out for them. He pointed himself in that direction and had to keep moving forward with life. The great thing is that God told him his heritage would be as great as the number of stars in the heaven. So every day that passed for Abraham, every day that did not bring the promise, he could have become discouraged. But all Abraham had to do was look up each night and he would be reminded of the promise and vastness of the promise as he saw the infinite number of stars above him. God kept the reminder in front of him to keep Abraham encouraged as he stretched forward.
Know in your heart that Jesus has prepared more for you in this life. Keep stretching that hand forward toward the promise, regardless of what you see or do not see before you. Every day that passed for Abraham brought him a step closer to the promise. Every day that passes brings you a step closer to your promise, and if you will keep pressing on toward the goal that is before you. He will continually put encouragement within you.
Do not be discouraged. Keep reaching forward, pursuing what He has placed before you. How do we do that? We find the answer in a few verses, in Philippians 3:16 shown here in the Amplified Bible. 16” Only let us hold true to what we have already attained and walk and order our lives by that.”
Hold true to what you have already learned in Him, through the power of His Word and His faithfulness to His Word.
J Todd Hostetler