Saturday, May 4, 2024

Our Past Doesn't Define Us

Our Past Doesn't Define Us
by David Brenneman 

Woke up from a series of dreams where I was going places and doing things that are completely out of the normal for me. 

Upon clearing my head with some coffee and then my time reading my Bible, this set of thoughts emerged.  

Our past does not define us. We are to learn from those days in order to make better decisions in the present and the future. Proverbs says that a multitude of counselors ensures success.

"Now large crowds were going along with Him; and He turned and said to them, [26] “If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple. Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’ Or what king, when he sets out to meet another king in battle, will not first sit down and consider whether he is strong enough with ten thousand men to encounter the one coming against him with twenty thousand? Or else, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. So then, none of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions. “Therefore, salt is good; but if even salt has become tasteless, with what will it be seasoned? It is useless either for the soil or for the manure pile; it is thrown out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” Luke 14:25-35.

The sin nature we have loves to point out just how much and how often we have failed in our lives with regards to being a follower of Jesus.  

The enemy of God loves to throw our sins previously committed in our faces. 

Jesus said that once we ask Him to forgive us, He remembers them no more. Casting them as far as the east is from the west. 

If it's in the character of Christ Jesus to forgive me and to forget my sins, then I ought to follow suit. 

We can learn from our past but should never take up residence there.

Do you have an address in your mind that you keep returning to?

Same thing. A memory is an address. We can find jokes a plenty on the internet of some people's minds being like a web browser with 30 plus tabs open and at least one is music we can't find to shut down. 

We do not realize that preoccupation is a tool used against us at times. Re-living the past. Immersing into things in the present that do nothing with regards to living life for Jesus.

We have whole industries that are all about preoccupation. While rest and sleep are necessary, getting away from life's issues for a time is often necessary...we shouldn't stay there.

Proverbs has several sections where the folly of excesses comes back to hurt the person he's writing about.

Most industries want everyone's undivided attention at work. Some guilt people into policies and procedures that actually compromise their beliefs. 

Our lives in Christ are to be about Jesus. Our past is dead and gone. 

Time travel doesn't exist for humanity. Jesus alone permitted only certain people to see the future but that's it...and that was for the word of God alone.

If Jesus can forgive me, and He does. If Jesus can choose to forget, so can I.

So can you, if you are saved in Christ Jesus.  

My past negative experience should not be a boat anchor on dry land.  

Forgiveness is to set us free. 

As someone once said, when Satan reminds you of your past, remind him of his future.

He is a defeated foe. He lost at the cross of Jesus Christ.  

Jesus died for us, we live for Him.

Yesterday in a thrift store I heard one of my favorite songs. "I'd rather have Jesus".  

Life does have things in it. 
Life does have choices in it.
Don't hold onto the things.
Make wise choices.

Jesus desires people who are like His servant David. A man after God's own heart.

If your past has you chained to Jesus about it. 
It's time to lay that burden down at the cross of Jesus.

All NASB 1995 and NASB Scripture Excerpts used by permission. (C) Lockman Foundation

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