We Can’t Move Forward If We Don’t Know Where We’ve Been: 3 Ways to Celebrate the Past & Claim Victory Over the Future

 In Encouragement, Personal Growth

Now that we’re a few days into 2015, our resolutions have evolved from simply being items on a list to action steps we need to take. And in the midst of those steps, I’m learning it’s important to set up road markers along the way.

Often, I run so fast and hard towards my goals that I forget what has happened or is happening. My mind seems to be so laser focused on “next,” that I often forget “now”—and that’s not something to be proud of. In rushing past today, we miss the opportunity to celebrate, to take notes, to learn, to grow and see how we’re becoming who God made us to be in real time. I’m learning I need to mark my moments.

Road markers are those gnarly trail blazing posts we erect to memorialize what’s behind and claim what’s ahead. It’s our promise to ourselves that we won’t forget the way back, realizing we’re on a journey where every step is important, every detail critical, every milestone an accomplishment.

“Set up signposts to mark your trip home. Get a good map. Study the road conditions. The road out is the road back…how long will you flit here and there, indecisive? How long before you make up your fickle mind? God will create a new thing in this land: a transformed woman will embrace the transforming God!” {Jeremiah 31:21-22}

Markers are really our way of celebrating, growing, moving forward and becoming more of who God made us to be. They’re symbols of transformation and reminders to stay rooted in what we believe.

We can’t move forward if we don’t know where we’ve been. Are you familiar with the quote, “Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it?” When we don’t take the time to pause and reflect, we limit how far we can truly go. When we fail to set up road markers along the path of becoming, we’re flirting with repeating history, traveling trails we’ve already been.

How can we set up road markers on the journey of becoming who God made us to be?

  1. Celebrate wins. Every time you experience victory—no matter how small or large—write it down. Grab a notebook and list your “wins” so that you can celebrate growth.
  2. Note the tough stuff. Avoid only memorializing victories. Track the tough stuff too. Write down sticky situations, hard conversations, moments you felt abandoned and times you messed up. Often, it’s in these moments that we learn and grow the most.
  3. Evaluate. Gain some time, perspective and distance from your “wins” and “tough stuff” lists and evaluate them. What made the winning moments “wins”? What about those moments stand out to you? How did they make you feel strong? What about that tough situation irritated you the most? After gaining distance, has your perspective on that sticky circumstance changed? Do you have a different vantage point you couldn’t see from previously? Wrestling through the evaluating process will allow you document your growth, track progress and make notes of how you want to do things differently in the future.

Transformation is all about embracing the God who is constantly transforming us. It’s about driving your stake in the ground, marking your moments and anticipating the path ahead. It’s about claiming victory over the road left behind, not forgetting what brought you to this point in time. It’s a choice to lace up your boots, brush the dirt off your face and declare yourself to be the beloved warrior God already designed you to be.

Personally, I’m setting up my markers…and I’m lacing up my boots. Will you?

What road markers do you need to establish today?

Author: Emily B. Cummins

Emily Cummins is a University of Florida & College of Central Florida grad who is passionate about partnering with people to become who they were made to be. Emily is the Online Campus Pastor at Church of Hope in Ocala, Florida. She’s passionate about storytelling, good cups of coffee, and jamming to country music. And most importantly, she’s passionately pursuing becoming the woman God made her to be.

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