Sometimes it’s better to remember you could do something, than it is to try to do it again.
I used to ride my motorcycles through the trees at a high rate of speed, many times through them with barely enough room for the handlebars to fit. At that young age crashing usually just meant getting up, repairing the bike and then doing it again, only a fool would attempt all those maneuvers at my age now.
That opening line is understood full well by the aged, but sadly not by many who have been born again, if there is one thing the flesh wants it is to go back to the days of pleasure, to rekindle that which it once knew. It is a part of us that denies the Lord Jesus Christ, that has no fear of God, that believes and attempts to coerce us into believing that the Almighty is a loving Father who simply forgives without any action of consequences to us when we sin.
The flesh my friends is the ultimate liar.
That old flame from school, those drinking buddies from long ago, the lust of the flesh and the eyes recalled with found memories at times of weakness of the Spirit. “The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (Matt. 26:41)
I have contemplated often just what the Lord meant that night when He said, “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation:” (Matt. 26:41) and why He chided them for falling asleep. Whether the disciples knew or not what was going to happen in just a few hours to Him is not the question, what temptations was He speaking about? It’s dark, it’s late, they are tired, surely not the temptation to flee, but what temptation was it to sleep?
That desire to return to days gone by, days long past will in every instance lead you down the wrong path my friends, away from Christ and the will of God and towards temptations of the flesh. As the old song says, “Glory days, pass me by.”
We do not need Satan’s assistance in this matter, the desire to go back to a point in our past that we found pleasing at that time draws all of us at one point or another in our walk with the Lord, and if we dwell on it, it will in time consume us. We will become unprofitable for a while, not eternally lost, for we are hid in Christ, but you may find yourself in the position of the prodigal son, restored in fellowship, but all belongs to your brother now.
“But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.” (Prov. 4:18)
To go backwards, to try to relive those moments, is to walk back into the darkness, usually to a time when that light was not in you, when the flesh ruled your life, not Christ.
What is waiting for us cannot be compared to even the most pleasant memory you have, and those promises must always be kept in mind when the flesh tries to coax you into returning to that which is now long gone. “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.” (Romans 7:18)
Here is the measure of the man of God, resting in the promises, true humility is denying oneself in all that the flesh desires and keeping our eyes on the Savior. You cannot recapture the past, recognize this truth, but you can contemplate this, “Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,” (Phil. 3:8)
“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,” (Phil. 3:13)