Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Quit Hitting Replay

Let me share with you why you need to take Paul's advice in Philippians 3:13-14 seriously.

Replaying failures or just bad experiences from your past is the most effective way to siphon off emotional and then physical energy.   It's also one of Satan's most destructive traps.

We all do stupid stuff, we all sin, and we all have experienced the stupid stuff and sin of others directed at us.  Why do we rehash it over and then over again and again?

If you did something stupid, if you offended someone---go ask them to forgive you.

It's not rocket science.  Just say, "I was wrong to be so _____", fill in the blank:  selfish, mean, uncaring, whatever you did, give it a name.  Then, ask, "Will you forgive me?"

Now---what if you were on the receiving end of someone else's sin?

I've spent years grappling with a situation where I was treated badly.  I don't know how many mornings I've awakened to hurtful memories.  I lie there and replay the events hearing the words and feeling the pain only to find I still can't understand:

  • why it happened
  • what I could have done differently at the time
  • what I was suppose to "learn" from it
This morning I woke up thinking about Phil. 3:13 

. . .one thing I do, forgetting those things that which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 
I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

And immediately I felt God's peace and a clarity about the episode I've never had in 13 years.

Since becoming a Christian the Holy Spirit has continually corrected me.  For over 40 years, sometimes gently and other times with more emphatic tone, He has shown me my sin. 

Why would He have kept quiet about this episode?  Then I got it.

Just because something happens doesn't always mean there is a lesson in it for you.  Not everything is corrective or even instructive.

But, it is always faith building.  

Is there something in your past that you keep dragging into your present?
Trying to make sense of it.  
Trying to redeem something from the pain.

Paul says forget about it.

Getting stuck in the past is like trying to look down a road you didn't take.

You're gonna miss things on the road you're on.  And you'll end up with a pain in the neck from looking back.

It'll pre-occupy your mental and emotional powers and eclipse your now with your then.

Forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Forward and upward are God's intended direction for us.

One day at a time.