Recently, Jan and I had coffee with some friends who were preparing their church to enter a new season. In the course of that preparation, a person with a significant leadership role in the church resigned. They were left with an important staff position to fill. I said to make sure they did not hire someone based on the history of the church. God wants to do something new - something that will not be discovered in their history. That new thing will require that my friends hear a fresh word from God regarding staffing and all areas of the ministry. God will use that word to steer their church in a new direction for a new season.
History positions us - Revelation leads us. Many times we use our history to form the decisions we make about the future because our history is familiar and predictable. Decisions based solely on history will produce the repetition of what currently exists. Revelation carries risk and uncertainty because what is revealed has not yet been attempted and is not part of our history. Obedience to fresh revelation is where new ground is gained and new territory is explored.
If you have a significant decision to make, give your history to God. This will allow you to offer empty hands to God as you process your decision. God will be faithful to place in your hands the revelation needed to help you step in a new direction that will reveal a new future. Don’t throw away your history. Learn from it but never let it be your only source of direction. History does not require faith. Revelation requires faith and that is what pleases God.