At our retreat this past March, Pastor Mike said something that stuck with me. It wasn’t even the main point of his sermon, but sometimes a side point in a sermon comes to life. He gave a quote:
“The past is history, the future is a mystery, but today is a gift.” Then he amplified the history part by saying that even though the past is history yet God can use it to show us new, valuable things. So I have chewed on this idea since then.
I see that we don’t get to rewrite the past—-but we can receive a divine re-interpretation of it through God’s lens. Without the re-interpretation it’s easy for me to replay a past incident and feel humiliated by it, or condemned by it. I was fired. I was rejected. I was betrayed. Without the Lord, these incidents can replay in 3-D HD video!
But looking at these past rejections through Christ’s eyes turns them around 180 degrees. I now say, without you Jesus, of course I felt rejected. But now, the times I depended too much on how people treated me can be switched to starting to love people, by Your power, outside of how they treat me.
Be encouraged, then. God does really re-interpret the past for his glory! He will show you how this is the antidote to feeling beat up! Of course we have an Enemy who will daily try to snatch that correct interpretation away. But in the power of the spirit we can stand firm and know that YES, the Lord’s way of looking at the past is the correct way.
Next week I’ll explore how some specific scriptures about redemption apply to how we deal with the past. To give you a preview, we’ll be using Ephesians 5:15-16, Galatians 3:13, and Joel 2:25.