April 5, 2024

Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:12-14


1. GOD IS CALLING YOU HIGHER. In 2020, my wife and I had the privilege of visiting Israel. Toward the end of the trip, she stayed back at the hotel to pack and have some time off. I went on a final tour, and the guide took us to Jerusalem, where we went to the steps leading up to the former temple site. The tour guide talked about the Psalms of Ascents (found in Psalms 120-134) and how, during three key holy days, observant Jewish people would make an annual pilgrimage to these festivals. The Jewish priests traditionally sang these Psalms as they ascended the steps to the temple in Jerusalem. As I was seated on these steps, not only was I reading and hearing about the Psalms, but I was also walking the path. This experience reminded me of God calling us every day to arise and press on. Ours is to be a progressive journey.
 In Philippians, Paul expressed how he was hungry for God and wanted to know the power of God’s resurrection. He wanted all that God had for him all the way through his life to his death and even in the resurrection (Philippians 3:10-11). He was honest enough to say he hadn’t arrived, that he was on a journey, and that this was a process. Paul wanted to press on so he could understand these things and why God got ahold of him. Life is kind of mysterious, yet God is a God of revelation who doesn’t withhold from us. As you seek Him, He will show you the purpose of why He got ahold of you in the first place.
 Faith is not a set of principles we use to get things. Faith is a life of action steps, walking by faith and not by sight. Step by step, God leads us. You look at the steps of Abraham in Romans chapter four; he kept pressing on in faith. Paul wrote it so eloquently: “But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13b-14).

“The people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits” (Daniel 11:31b NKJV). I thank You, God, that as I do life in faith, I will see so many amazing exploits. I ask God that You would stretch forth your hand to heal and that signs and wonders be done in the name of Jesus (Acts 4:30). I believe as I press on, as I forget what lies behind and reach forward to what lies ahead, that I have the victory. The chains are falling, circumstances are changing, and the scenario is improving in Jesus’ name, amen.

Faithful is God who calls you, and He will also bring it to pass!
Pastor Jeff Perry 

as·cent, noun
A movement upward. The act of changing location in an upward direction

Copyright © 2024 St. Louis Family Church, All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. All rights reserved. Scripture quotations marked NKJV are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved. “Ascent, N.” WordNet 3.0 by Princeton University, 2006, https://www.wordnik.com/words/ascent. Accessed 14 March 2024.