Running forward while looking backwards doesn’t work out too well, does it? Have you ever tried that and found yourself veering off to the side? What if we tried to run a race looking backwards the whole time? That might be a fun summer camp activity, but it would make for a disaster in a race of any seriousness. People would probably get hurt. Can this be applied to growth and development from adolescence into successful adulthood? What might you be looking back at and finding yourself wishing things were like that again? Name those things to yourself… Are those things calling you forward or backwards?
Sometimes those things might be simple, nonthreatening things like wishing your Saturday mornings were still spent playing video games and watching TV instead of having to get up and go to work. Sometimes those things might be more obvious like a young man recently becoming sober thinking about “the good old times.” Be careful to not allow your mind to stay in a place of lamenting the “glory days” if your answer to the last question in paragraph 1 was “backwards”. The more you allow your mind to linger on those thoughts the more likely you are to start veering off the road like when you try to run or drive while looking backwards.
Instead, replace those “looking back” type thoughts with forward thinking. Keep your eyes trained on your goals, the life you want, and try to think as far down the road as you can. Teenage brains have a hard time thinking of and planning for the future. You are likely to get overwhelmed quickly if you really start to think about it because you don’t like all the unknowns and you feel pressure to know exactly what it is you want to do and what it’s supposed to be like. Try to let go of that pressure and allow yourself to dream freely. This will help your brain develop forward thinking habits and will help you stay on the road to a healthy launching into successful adulthood.
Take Away: Replace backward glances with forwards thinking ASAP.
Now those who say such things make it clear that they are looking for a country of their own. And if they had been thinking of that country from which they departed, they would have had a continuing opportunity to return. But the truth is that they were longing for a better country, that is, a heavenly one. For that reason God is not ashamed to be called their God…