Finishing Well

 As most of us progress through this day, we give little thought or reflection to the days ahead and the days past. Not that we should dwell nor need to dwell too heavily upon either, as that can be a danger within itself. Should we not, though, at least give some thought to our end? What might our remaining days look like? Should we coast into our end? Should we view our last days with great trepidation? Should we instead, run headlong with a great anticipation of what lies ahead? 
            In order to look ahead, I believe it is imperative to also look behind. One must know where they came from so that they might know where they are going. It becomes critical for us to recognize our past is the vehicle which brought us to this place. For some, the past is reckless, dangerous, sad, hurtful, and scary. For others, it is a wondrous journey full of spectacular memories. Whatever the case, as you reflect on your past, it is part of you, and it is critical in helping you finish well. 
            Rather than letting your past define your future, why not choose a different direction? Why not choose to finish well in Jesus Christ? No matter whether you have never experienced Jesus Christ in your own life, or you have known Him for most of your life, He is the key to finishing well. His Word, the Bible, tells us that Christ makes all things new, even our past, allowing us to finish well in Him (Rev. 21:5a). How does this work exactly, you might ask? 
            When we let go of our past, or even our present conditions and instead allow Christ to work, we begin to move in a new direction. It is a direction we cannot go on our own. By being made new in Christ, all of the old can be put away, clearing the way to a bright and glorious future (2 Cor. 5:17). A few ways I have found to live this way:

  1. Look past the day-to-day and instead gain a larger Kingdom perspective.
  2. Take any necessary steps to understand the direction Jesus wants and needs you to go.
  3. Allow the Holy Spirit to work in keeping you on the correct path. 

As the apostle Paul reminded his young student, Timothy, it is important that we not only finish the race but that we finish well. 
2 Timothy 4:6–8 (NKJV)
6 For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing. 

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