When the armies of Israel stood cowering in terror before the threat of the Philistine champion, Goliath, there was only one young man who would stand strong to meet the challenge. David could stand boldly in the face of adversity because he was able to look back on the faithfulness of God not only in the lives of the people of Israel, but in his own life also.
In First Samuel 17:34-37, “David said to Saul: ‘Your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, I went out after it and struck it, and delivered the lamb from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught it by its beard, and struck and killed it. Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.’ Moreover David said, ‘The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine'” (NKJV).
When David remembered how God delivered him in times past, it gave him the confidence to believe that this time would be no different. He saw no difference between this giant or the lion and bear. David was seeing things from God’s vantage point, not man’s.
David’s ability to remember the marvelous works of the Lord was one of the keys to his great success as king over God’s people. He could look back with the right perspective and see the possibilities for the future.
When we purposely recall the works of the Lord in our lives, it proves to be a great source of strength.
In Psalm 63:5-7 David wrote: “My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips. When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. Because You have been my help, therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice” (NKJV).
Purposely forget those things of the past that bring discouragement. Paul said, “One thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal…” (Philippians 3:13 NAS).
Satan loves to condemn us for our past failures and mistakes, but set them aside. Look ahead. When the Israelites ate the Passover meal, they ate standing, not sitting. They were looking ahead to what was before them, instead of the 430 years of struggling that was behind them. They were on their feet―ready for what lay ahead.
When Jesus instituted the New Covenant, He said, “Do this in remembrance of Me” (Luke 22:19). Remember the price that was paid. Remember the work that was accomplished.
But also look back at what redemption has meant in our own individual lives. Remember how God has moved in our situation. Then we will be ready to look forward to the new vistas which lie ahead: the possibilities, the potential, the plans God has for us.
We can see with a new perspective because we remember the marvelous works that He has done in the past.