Thursday, January 1, 2009

There's No Past In Your Future

Many years ago, I faced incredible distress and despair as I struggled to let go of my past. Most people have walked down this same path in life. It may be the result of the sins of others, or it might be your own sins that weigh heavy upon you and keep you bound; regardless, the result is still the same- a burden that drains your spirit and turmoil within that keeps you from entering into the rest of God.

As I struggled to walk forward with God, one day I found myself driving down the road looking in the rear view mirror- focusing on what was behind me. I kept looking back and looking around in my side view mirrors and then, I heard a still quiet voice say to me, “There’s no past in your future.” When you hear words like that, you know right away, you’ve heard from God. I will never forget those words and I hope that whatever it is you’re facing in life today, you’ll accept those words from God as well- “There’s no past in your future.” If we are unable to let go of what lies behind, we’ll never move forward in life. Holding on to the past keeps us from embracing God’s future for us. You see, most of the time God has forgiven us, but we continue to hold on to un-forgiveness in our hearts; we keep bringing up what God has already forgotten. Isaiah 43:18 (NIV) says,

“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.”
I don’t think God could be clearer in His instructions to us. Yesterday is gone- we must learn to live in the present. God has given us forgiveness for the past, faith for the future, and grace for the present moment. His grace that He has given for the past is used up and His grace for our future has not been given - He gives us grace for the moment we’re in and we must learn to embrace it fully.

It’s easy to stay bound by our past. Our fallen nature enjoys throwing pity parties and blaming everyone and everything for our troubles, instead of choosing to rise up and embrace God’s grace in order to completely surrender our life into His hands. When we come to the place of just “letting go,” God begins to work on our past, cleaning up the mess, and bringing us to the place of living by His grace. We can’t make our wrongs right and neither can anyone else- we’ve got to stop holding on to un-forgiveness which is holding us back from God’s greatest blessings in our lives. It’s God’s job to judge, not ours; only He can render justice. It’s not easy, it’s difficult at best. But God’s not asking you to do it on your own. He waits for you to come to Him so He can help you. (Isaiah 30:18) And don’t forget the enemy prowls around like a roaring lion. (1 Peter 5:8) The enemy wants you living a life of defeat and discouragement; keeping you from God’s best in your life. So, don’t be surprised when you find the enemy attacking relentlessly as you walk forward in faith. See your circumstances through the eyes of God- they go much deeper than what is on the surface…. You’re in a fight of faith.

The Apostle Paul knew what it meant to suffer; his advice in the midst of unthinkable adversities should bring strength and encouragement to us as we choose to forgive the past and embrace the future. Paul said in Philippians 3: 13-14 (NLT),

“No, dear brother and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.”
As you embrace God’s will for your life, know that He wants you “focusing all of your energies on forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.” One little bit of advice as you do, “Don’t take your eyes off Jesus.”


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I am so blessed that you would take the time to share your thoughts with me! You encourage my faith and I pray that God will fill you to the full with His love, mercy,and grace! With joy, Cherie

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