I’ve gotten into this odd, slightly dangerous, habit as of late. Whilst driving, I tend to spend more time looking in my rearview mirror than I do through my windshield. I realize that it’s beneficial to glance up, on occasion, to make sure no one is tailing too close and such, but focusing there isn’t really the point either. After all, the rearview mirror is small and narrow for a reason; what lies behind was once ahead of you. So when looking back, you shouldn’t see any surprises, only small reminders of where you once were.
Staring at the rearview mirror doesn’t do much to prepare you for where you’re headed either. If I would just focus on the road in front of me, I would catch the speed limit sign so I wouldn’t need to be paranoid about being caught by the “Po-po.” If I paid attention to what laid in front of me, I would see the “Warning: Construction Ahead,” “Detour,” and “Caution, Sharp Turn,” signs. I wouldn’t be caught off guard because I would have seen the warnings and had time to make adjustments, change lanes, or even exit if needed.
Driving forward, but looking back is remedy for not getting very far, very fast.
2010 was a year that gave me a run for my money on a lot of levels. For so many reasons, I would like to forget much of it. But as a new years dawns, the Lord has made it clear that is was a year of preparation; a season of pruning, reprioritizing, and general maintenance. A thorough check up on the affections of my heart that have been misplaced. The fears that mistakenly dominated my faith. And the seemingly infrequent, but perfectly timed, views of landscape that refreshed me long enough to keep driving towards the unknown.
So while 2010 felt like I was stranded on the shoulder much of the time, watching so many pass me by with ease and enjoyment, I know now there were just a few screws loose, the “check engine” light was on and the oil needed refreshing.
There’s no need to focus on what lies behind me anymore. It is where I once was; no longer where I am.
So here’s to 2011: May our eyes be fixed forward and our hands steadily resting on faith and grace. May our tanks be full of hope and courage. And may our rearview mirrors stand as reminders of deliverance and not destination.