This past weekend I had the opportunity to be a part of the Full Consistory retreat at Western Theological Seminary. In planning for the event I created slides for a presentation on my iPad Mini. On a couple of slides I needed to insert photos which had backgrounds that distracted from the central image. I started to wonder if there was a simple way to remove the background.
Being that I was creating this presentation on my iPad Mini I figured there must be an app for that. Sure enough, I found one called Background Eraser. At 99 cents, it was a bargain. After installing the app, I got to work by opening the photo, selecting the background, and letting it eliminate all but the important aspects of the photo. Success! The photo now was distraction free.
As I heard Ken Eriks preach this Sunday, I couldn’t help but think how amazing it would be if there was an app that could erase our past accomplishments and failures so only our best selves, who we are in Christ, could show through. In Philippians 3:13-14 Paul says it this way:
“Beloved, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus.”
Think of the freedom we get to experience by forgetting the past and living into the unique design for which God has created us. Even as we forget the past we need to recognize that God gave us that past in order to prepare us for the future. Andy Stanley talks about how our unique backgrounds can even be a benefit in helping us to make decisions. He suggests that we should always ask ourselves:
“…In light of my past experiences, my current circumstances, and my future hopes and dreams, what is the wise thing for me to do?”
Isn’t that a fun way to look at each decision and challenge we face? By aligning our unique design with God’s will and His work, we can continue to embrace a life of being transformed in order to more clearly reflect Christ. As Ken Eriks says,
“God loves you just the way you are, and God loves you far too much to leave you that way.”
What are you going to forget?
What goal are you pressing toward?
What has God built you to do?
*This article was originally written for the eNewsletter called “Sunday’s Comin'” from Fellowship Reformed Church, Holland, MI