And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.
A strong faith is a faith that doesn’t look back, but forward. So many times Abraham could have given up, gotten impatient, started to doubt, and just went back where he came from and lived a good life there. But with a taste of a better future, a glimpse of that city to come, he’s not willing to go back. That old place is no longer appealing. It no longer captured his imagination because he understood that this world was not his home. It wasn’t about building a kingdom here, but looking forward to the one that God is building.
Our lives here are not to be spent looking back, but we are to focus on the future and what is to come. The direction we are facing determines where we will go and what we will move toward, and if all we’re doing is longing for what used to be or what we’ve left behind, we’re not going to be able to move toward what else God has for us. There is an amazing future ahead, prepared by God just for us.
We do have that heavenly home to look forward to, and just knowing that changes a lot about our focus and our perspective here. But it’s not just about anticipating going to that heavenly city. We also have to consider how that affects what we do now. If we’re only mindful of where we’ve been, we may focus too much on ourselves, our regrets, our losses, what was missed. But if we’re mindful of what is yet to come, we’re focusing on things that we can still impact and change. Because we can start serving now, doing right, living for God, and helping others come to know Him, too.
Since this world is all we know, sometimes it’s easy to place too much importance on worldly things. It’s easy to live with a shortsighted vision of the temporary. But when we’re trusting God with our future, it doesn’t matter so much where we’ve been as where we’re going. We have so much to look forward to, so let’s not spend all of our time looking back. Let’s not return to the former and the lesser, but keep moving ahead toward the better that God has prepared for us.