No Going Back

Written by M. Larson

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After many years away, I was visiting my hometown, Ocean Gate, New Jersey.  For a long time I had wished I could go back – perhaps because of all the wonderful memories I cherished.

Parking my car near the deserted yacht club and boardwalk, I walked toward the house in which I had grown up.

Standing across the street, I stared at it.  It seemed so forlorn and different!  The large plate-glass windows that had surrounded my parents’ real estate office (and our living room) had been replaced by two small windows framed in black. The place looked closed up, unlived in.

Memories flooded back to me – my parents, my little brother, all the friends I had had. Since I played the piano, that living room had been a meeting place for young people.  Guys would bring their instruments, guys and gals would come to sing or listen.  Or we’d meet at the nearby beach to swim, duck each other, laugh, and have beach parties with fires, hot dogs, and marshmallows–and sometimes music.

A tear slid down my cheek – those days were gone forever!  They couldn’t be found here. This was no longer my beloved Ocean Gate.

While there, I visited some old friends.  Through the years they had changed a lot – and so had I.  Also, my brother and my father were with the Lord.  They too were gone.

It’s nice to remember all the good family and friends times.  We can cherish them.  But we can never go back to them; they are gone with time.
These thoughts occur to me:

1) We can’t go back and undo the past
Of what value are useless regrets?  If we feel guilty about something we did or didn’t do in the past, our Lord has a remedy: His precious blood that cleanses us of all sin.  When we ask for forgiveness, He grants it.  And if He forgives us, we need to forgive ourselves!  Jesus said, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”  How can we love our neighbor, if we can’t love ourselves in the certainty of forgiveness?

2) We can do something about the present and the future
Starting today we can begin making our lives count for Jesus Christ and eternity.  If you need salvation, receive the Lord Jesus as your Savior*.  If you desire God’s guidance as to what you should do for Him, ask Him for it – and then follow His light.  God said, “I will guide you with mine eye.”

Let’s follow the Apostle Paul’s example.  He said, “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:13-14, NIV).

Questions: As Easter has come and gone do you need to reach forward to what God has for you in His resurrection power?

About the Author Muriel Larson

Daily audio podcast: A second daily devotional, Listening will Transform your Relationships, today on the Men’s Devotional Blog

7 Responses to “No Going Back”

  • kanj says:

    Muriel, thank you for the devotional. the ‘I should have(s)’, the ‘what if’s’, the ‘what only if’s’ have to be put to rest. this is what I told myself when I accepted Jesus as my Savior. living the negative mode for so many years, it was hard for me at first to forgive myself. it took time, but once I did, my faith began to blossom. the fear left me knowing that Jesus had not. serenity replaced anxiety, peace replaced the anger and bitterness. I need to reach forward always to what God has for me in His resurrection. as long as I reach, I know His hand is as outstretched to me as I to Him.
    ”God’s unseen presence comforts me,
    I know He’s always near,
    And when life’s storms besiege my soul;
    He says, ”My child, I’m here.”-D. De Hann

  • anonymous says:

    Wow, Lindy I can relate. I also have been in that kind of state (due to a loss of relationship & many others/ changes in recent years). Recently, God has been challenging me to look at now, and future, instead of past. I admit that I was also stuck in the past. I pray God gives us wisdom & strength to look forward. God bless you.

  • Lindy says:

    My motherdied unexpectedly 3 and one half years ago. She was my best friend and neighbor and I miss her terribly. I keep looking back to happy times when I was younger and am wasting my life daily wishing for the past.

  • sharon b says:

    i surely do need to look forward and not back

  • Oh, Arlette, Jesus paid it ALL! If you have repented of sins and receive Him as your Savior, you are washed clean, as white as snow! Now let the past go and rejoice in your Lord and serve Him with all your heart! He loves us, you know.

  • Arlette says:

    I pray that I really will be able to forgive the horrible sins I have committed and to live without the scars marking my path so that I may glorify His name in my life

  • anonymous says:

    thank you

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