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There is a school of thought that says dwelling on the past impedes one’s progress. Perhaps this was Apostle Paul’s point of view while in prison. There, he wrote to the Philippians about his mindset,  “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal of the prize of the upward calling of God.”

We are in a healthy condition when we see ourselves as one marching to achieve our goals in life regardless of the past. Progress is the healthy condition for every person. We only realize our best place in life whenever we are growing in grace. The best of humanity does not talk of their attainments; but rather, their tone is self-depreciation, not self-content.

Some people avoid straining toward their goal by believing that the only affirmation they need is already theirs by imputation. Others believe they have perfection by who they proclaim to be in life and have achieved all that they hoped for during the battle of life. This notion is considered complacency, and it can be reached in the mind of humans through many roads of life.

American Bible teacher M.R. DeHaan said, “Self-satisfaction is the death of progress. Dissatisfaction with past accomplishments is the mother of invention. Because man was dissatisfied with carrying and lifting loads upon his shoulders, he invented vehicles to ride in. Pity the man who is content with his own progress and feels he has arrived. Nothing here is more deadly as self-satisfaction.”

For example, after Calvin Coolidge, the 30th president of the United States, issued his famous “I do not choose to run” statement, he was besieged by reporters wanting details. One persistent journalist kept asking, exactly why don’t you want to be president again. He replied because there is no chance for advancement.

If an individual has no desires to move forward because they believe they have reached the pinnacle of their life, there is a danger of shirking responsibility of striving toward your goal of a higher calling from God. We should never quit straining toward another goal, having achieved the goals of the past. Everybody can see the beauty of character but themselves. It has been said that “shallow streams brawl and bubble, but deep waters flow on in silence.” So, keep pressing forward in this New Year for a health experience. And Never Give Up! Never Give Up! Never Give Up!

By Dr. Walter Ghosten