THE REAR VIEW MIRROR
AUTHOR - BILL TAYLOR
COPYRIGHT 2017 - BILL TAYLOR
PUBLISHED BY BILL TAYLOR AT
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*Special thanks to Shila and
Pragna for their encouragement and inspiration*
Corinthians 5 - 17: “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, the new
creation has come: The old has gone the new is here”!
can possibly fathom the magnificent mind, heart, and abilities of
God? This wonderful God who intervenes in our very worst with His
very best creating ways where there are no ways. He heals our pasts
and presents to us a newly established future in him. He gives us
spiritual sight to see His breathtaking beauty in every sunrise and
sunset. He displays His awesome incredible colorfulness and diversity
in every face from every tribe, people, nation and language! And we
get to immerse ourselves in admiration of His handiwork with sacred
reverence. Quite the view to live out our lives in but one that comes
with a caution:
our new lives were cars, Jesus would give us the keys with this note
of importance to consider before letting us drive out of the parking
lot: Be ever so sure to fix your eyes on the windshield not the “rear
view mirror”! Straight ahead is where our “new what is”
the classic Billy Ocean song “Suddenly” so beautifully depicted
in its lyrics: “Suddenly life has new meaning to me. There’s
beauty up above and things we never take notice of. You wake up and
suddenly, you’re in love”.
it a secular song, the spiritual is very much applicable. At twenty
seven years of age I woke up from a long sleep and was suddenly aware
of being loved by God with only one seemingly obvious choice of
response at my disposal. To love Him back!
did I turn to “religion” as one might think? Not even close. I
was introduced by God’s grace to the available “reality” of an
intimate “relationship” with my Creator! One that transcends
religion with its man-made textures and flavors, into a higher place
where life is lived out with a heart forever marinating in its Lord’s
immeasurable love. That’s called “flip the page” new!
Purpose To The Past
you launch out on a journey in your vehicle you will notice, that
which is in your “rear view mirror” at start up, gets
increasingly smaller as you drive.
your “windshield visual” never shrinks in size but continually
reveals the ‘’new’’ that awaits your amazed perusal at each
and every turn and bend in the road. There’s a lot of God
orchestrated WOWS to experience when our eyes are fixed straight
are we to simply ignore our pasts, denying they ever existed? Well,
that would in reality be impossible apart from full-blown amnesia
setting in. Our ‘’what was’’ is a very important factor in
arriving at our “what is”. When seen as such we can find
ourselves grateful for every step and mis-step but not in a nostalgic
kind of way. They’re not the “good old days” but they did have
a purpose in directing us to where we now find ourselves.
uses everything, the good the bad and the ugly, for His desired
results. He wastes nothing. I can now minister to the person
navigating through a nervous breakdown because I had one.
can talk to the drug user because I was one. I can have compassion on
the divorced because I have lived that nightmare. I can feel the pain
of the hopeless heart because I’ve experienced a hopeless heart. I
can legitimately love the unlovely because I was legitimately loved
by God in my least loveable of times.
to do so I must remember to revert to my Lord’s caution as He
handed me the keys to my new life. Eyes straight ahead on the road I
how do I do both and this is profoundly important? I can share it but
I cannot wear it! It simply is no longer applicable! When I reflect
on my past for the benefit of another, I do so understanding that the
life spoken of no longer exists. It’s an old version of me! It’s
not who I am but rather who I was. Therefore two separate and
clearly defined time frames must be in play, with the old being
disallowed emotional access to the new.
truly amazing how when God heals our past, then gives it purpose by
using it to help others, it loses it’s sting! In a very real way it
feels like we are talking about someone else while being aware that
it is us but a very different us! An old version! A dead version! A
past version! Folks, new life is in fact, new in every way! Not
fancifully new but realistically new!
dearly beloved sisters Shila and Pragna, would simply put it this
way: I’VE CHANGED AND I KNOW IT!
right folks. A brand new wardrobe! That can never be a bad thing! But
this one is equally and appropriately new in the light of our
new-ness and very different than the clothes we wore before.
of us used to cloth ourselves in one of two garments. Obvious
un-righteousness as would be the case with me, with the other being
self-thought self-righteousness. I’m not sure which one is worse
but the bible describes them both as all-inclusively “filthy rags”,
so let’s go with God’s opinion and accept they’re both bad for
different reasons and quite smelly to God’s sensitive nostrils. He
is holy and perfect! Although it would seem He has a much easier time
dealing with the admittedly un-righteous. The bible makes clear, the
religiously endowed Pharisees were never His favorite cup of tea.
wardrobe change involves a trade-off like no other. An exchange of
“rags to riches” must take place. A handing in the old for the
new. Our un-righteousness and self-righteousness for the
righteousness of Christ! The bible describes it as a “spiritual
robe”. A majestic garment and gift of inheritance purchased through
the cross to be worn with its well-deserved appreciation.
is our singularly ordained, appointed, and anointed by God piece of
clothing, not to be worn under or over anything else. All other
articles of apparel would simply contaminate its divinely regal
beauty. We’re to adorn ourselves with it at all times without
interruption as its perfection and protection transmits to our souls
our security in its Provider.
ring of adoption! My goodness, what a beautifully spectacular
addition! A gifted spiritual piece of jewelry to serve as a constant
reminder of our adopted by God status as His sons and daughters with
His included encouragement to call him Father. The ring of
relationship with our Creator! Could there be anything more
magnificent to wear on our finger.
say that a perfect diamond, being observed from multiple angles,
reflects its perfection in different ways based on different views.
It never looks “less perfect” and so it is with our ring! Once
again its perfection is a reflection of its Provider! It serves to
remind us that our adoption is secured and sealed by its Creator who
does all things very well!
wear it with “appropriate pride” but never arrogance,
understanding it wasn’t earned by us but rather gifted to us,
freely. Our attitude while wearing this valued addition is therefore
and always “extreme thankfulness”.
It’s All In Front
previously described as inclusionary in our “new lives” will not
be found in our “rear view mirrors”. It’s all in front of us.
‘’Windshields” are where “new life” is discovered. All that
once was, no longer applies. Things have changed. We are different in
every way as is our lives.
“rear view mirrors” actually do is remind us of our “what was”
with their unwelcomed and unproductive reminders. To also be aware
of: Something else lives in that reflection. The one who would like
to challenge the validity of your faith! That debate can only happen
if we turn our focus on the past.
we all know as fact: We can’t go forward and backward at the same
time without suffering the consequences. Duality of viewing when
driving a car leads to accidents. Usually big ones!
Apostle Paul has something to impart on the matter in Philippians 3 -
12 & 13: “Not that I have already attained all of this, or have
already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for
which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters I do not
consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do:
Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”.
directive and direction couldn’t be more clear. First a
‘’forgetting” what is behind! Paul had a lot to forget! In his
Pharisaic hay day he was the imprisoner and at times killer of Jesus
followers. Wow, talk about rear view mirror issues!
Paul knew if he was going to get to where he needed to, he would have
to leave where he was! First and foremost, He needed to say goodbye
to his previous “what was”.
“forgetting’’ he moves to a directional change: “Straining
toward what is ahead”.
has created for us a “new” normal complete with a “new”
future to be discovered, one day at a time as we fix our eyes forward
on the author and finisher of our faith, Jesus!
“new” path has a landscape of breathtaking beauty to immerse our
eyes in. Things that are heavenly textured with the reality and
radiance of Christ. That being said, we have no business dabbling in
dead things when so much life has been provided for our spiritual
enjoyment and edification.
8 - 36: “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed”.
Free from what? The past, with heavenly licence, enablement and
encouragement to do so!
of note: “free indeed”: strongly emphasises the “indeed” as
in totally free! If Paul could walk away from his “what was”,
surely we can follow suit!
5 - 1: “It is for freedom Christ has set us free. Stand firm then
and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery”.
The past is in every way a slave master.
the temptation is too great to resist taking an occasional peek, then
just remove the mirror. Its only real purpose is to hang those
annoying Christmas tree deodorizers on. You won’t miss it! You also
won’t miss its inferences and accusations!
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ROSE AND THE THORN
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ROAD LESS TRAVELED
IN CHINA SHOPS
IS A JOURNEY
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- IT’S A NEW DAY!
FRIEND - MY PEACE - MY LORD
DECIDE - CHOICES
REAR VIEW MIRROR
LOVE MADE PERFECT
GRACE - AMAZING SAVIOR
ME HOLY SPIRIT
- GOD IS NOT INTIMIDATED