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How often have you heard it said, “It’s important to remember where you came from.”? It’s a statement that’s been coined by so many people from former US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to Pop singer Katy Perry.
It’s a statement meant to “keep us grounded”. Keep us humble.
This week, I decided it’s not very biblical and I don’t like it! It seems to simply feed the “tall poppy syndrome” permeating Australian society.
I would suggest that most of us don’t need to be “kept grounded”. Most of us need to allow ourselves to be released to “Soar on wings like eagles.” I don’t read anywhere in the Bible that we should “stay grounded” – which is usually code for self flagellation. I read that we have been “seated in heavenly places” and that “we are the head and not the tail”.
God always draws our gaze upward. Drawing us to acknowledge that we are overcomers.
The closest to “keeping us grounded” the Bible gets is to tell us to “Be humble.” But humility isn’t beating ourselves up over our failings or shortfalls. It’s simply having an accurate picture of who we really are. And when we see that from God’s perspective, we see a victor and not a victim. An overcomer and not someone beaten by circumstance.
So rather than remembering where you came from, try the more biblical pattern of remembering what God has brought you through.
I was reminded of Deuteronomy 26:5-9 this week. It reads:
Then you shall declare before the Lord your God: “My father was a wandering Aramean, and he went down into Egypt with a few people and lived there and became a great nation, powerful and numerous. But the Egyptians mistreated us and made us suffer, subjecting us to harsh labor. Then we cried out to the Lord, the God of our ancestors, and the Lord heard our voice and saw our misery, toil and oppression. So the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with great terror and with signs and wonders. He brought us to this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey;
The particular passage is what the people were instructed to say at the bringing of the firstfruit of the promised land. But it’s just one of many passages where the people of Israel stopped to take stock of, not where they had come from, but what God had brought them through.
It’s so important that we take time to recount our history from the perspective of seeing God’s hand in it. Not just the way we lurched from crisis to crisis, but focusing on God’s hand in our life to bring us out of the bondages and situations we encountered.
When I stop to look at God’s hand on my life, my family, our church – I see miracle after miracle and it builds faith that we can overcome any obstacle and see destiny come to pass. Not because we’re good enough or not good enough – but because of God’s faithfulness to be the author AND perfecter of our faith.
Let me encourage you to take 180 seconds right now to reflect on the ways God has brought you to this place in your life – Focus on His miracles and let faith begin to rise.
We love you church. See you on Sunday
Alex & Sarah