The world will tell us that the dominating influence in our life is our past. If we came from a difficult home, that will determine the direction of our life. If our culture was treated unfairly, that will dictate the condition of our life today. If we were hurt or abused or if our youth was spent in rebellion, the remainder of our life will be spent struggling with our past.
The way of Jesus, on the other hand, promises a life in freedom because Christ has overcome our past. This is our exodus. This is our deliverance. The “old things” have been done away with and “new things” have come. God has so totally forgiven and absorbed sin that He chooses not to remember it. We do not forget the past, but we are not controlled or motivated by it. The Christian looks to the future with hope and breathes in the now. Be thankful for God’s forgiveness but know it was for the reality of the now!
The people of the world focus on what they are overcoming. Christians focus on what they are becoming. Christians know that the Holy Spirit is conforming them into the image of Christ. Even if our now and future is understood by the world as shame and failure, we have the faith of resurrection and the trust in God’s love. We know that eventually every injustice will be addressed and every hurt comforted. We know that evil, and death itself, will finally be brought to an end. Our future is so full and rich and exciting that it supersedes whatever has happened in the past and now is the time that we can join God and make the Kingdom of God a reality. If we are preoccupied with our past, let’s ask God to open our eyes to the incredible future that awaits us and begin to see the now as a great privilege to embrace!