August 28th 2009

The Good Old Days

“Job continued his discourse: ‘How I long for the months gone by, for the days when God watched over me, when his lamp shone upon my head and by his light I walked through darkness! Oh, for the days when I was in my prime, when God’s intimate friendship blessed my house, when the Almighty was still with me and my children were around me, when my path was drenched with cream and the rock poured out for me streams of olive oil.'”
Job 29:1-6 (NIV)

A friend of ours died recently. She was a good age and had lived a long and full life. When friends or relatives die we often think back over their lives and ours, to the events of the past. We remember happy occasions and sad ones, exciting moments and glad ones. Sometimes we wish we could go back and change or relive those days.

Do you long for the ‘good old days’? There’s something about looking back that makes things seem much better than they really were-like Job in the verses above, when his path was ‘drenched with cream and the rock poured out for me streams of olive oil’. The Children of Israel when they were uncomfortable on the way to the Promised Land, remembered the cucumbers, melons and leeks, but forgot about the slavery and deprivation of Egypt.

Nostalgia and remembering good times and happy memories is not wrong, but let’s not get so focused on past pleasures that we forget to rise to the challenges facing us today; that we forget to plan and prepare for the future; that we forget to remember the needs of the present; that we fail to recognize open doors and opportunities until it is too late.

Hebrews 3:13 says, “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”

If we have perhaps ‘sat on our hands’ too long, it is not too late to change. Ephesians 5:15-16 (KJV) says, “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil.”

Forgetting the past, press forward as it says in Philippians 3:13-14, then we can look forward in hope as well as back with satisfaction.

Prayer
Dear Father, we thank you for the good things that we have enjoyed in the past, the family occasions, for the pleasures of good fun, food and fellowship, for friends and adventures, holidays and jobs. Help us to use those memories and experiences to improve our characters and benefit those we come into contact with now and in the future.
Amen

Study by Nancy Silcox

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