Do you ever step back and evaluate your experiences? Have you looked back over your life and see how it has changed over the years? Do you take in the changes and learn lessons from past decisions? Have you looked back to see how God has moved in your life?
I venture to say that not many of us will look back across our lives to see how God has worked in them. Oh, we will remember and reminisce with family and friends about this or that. We’ll enjoy some good laughs and maybe a few tears as we remember the past. Often, we remember the good times more than the bad. But we will often laugh at even the bad times.
Why is it we are so negligent in looking back at our past to learn from it? In today’s world, we have put more emphasis on the right now, this very moment and its experience than we put on bettering our lives. It’s about living in the moment, experiencing it, rather than learning to make the next one better.
We also don’t put much stock in listening and learning from others. We can learn a lot by listening to others who have had a wide array of experiences. I know I certainly was less likely to listen to others when I was much younger than I am today. I’m not sure if that is due to getting older or having had the experience of listening to someone else and finding their advice to be true that has caused me to be more open to listening. Either way, I’m glad I listen more today.
Through reflection and listening to others, we can see God working in our lives. In fact, it is often through others that He is giving us advice. This is especially true if the advice is coming from our immediate family or our church family. God works through those who care about us to give us good advice. He also uses them to give us the hard advice sometimes, the type of advice we don’t really want to hear.
We need to take time to reflect. We need to find a quiet time and space to sit down and think about how God has worked in our lives. We need to recognize how it happened and apply those lessons in our lives as we go forward. It will make us wiser and help us be better listeners and decisionmakers going forward.
I pray we all take time to reflect on how God has worked in our lives. I pray each one of us will set aside a time and space to be quiet and reflect. I pray we learn valuable lessons during our reflections. Spend quiet time with God. See how He has worked in your life. Learn the lessons He wants you to learn. Become wiser. Be a better decisionmaker. God is working for you.
Give me a sign of your goodness,
that my enemies may see it and be put to shame,
for you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.