"No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead."
- Philippians 3:13
There are days when you are doing particularly nothing that requires concentration and you suddenly remember something you did during your younger years and you stop whatever it is that you are doing and shout a defeated, "nooooo!!" because you know that no matter how loud you shout what's done is done and can no longer be changed and so it sticks with you forever.
I don't know particularly what it is about today, but I've had several flashbacks about the decisions i've made when I was younger and how foolish I was to devote my time on things (and people) who could never truly satisfy me or my life.
When I was younger, I often said that I was surrendering all to God without doing anything to actually make it real in my life so the consequences were a lot of tears, sticky situations and foolish choices that simply make me want to run and hide.
As I gaze back in the past seven years of my life, I could only do two things a) shake my head at how utterly selfish I have been and b) thank God profusely for taking me out a life of denial and hope in things that made me look desperate.
God is soo good.
I understand that that statement has been turned into a cliche, however, at the core of it, that is all I can say. Because God loved me and had a plan for me even before I even thought of giving everything to Him, that even when I was set in my foolish ways, He was patient enough to wait for me to get out of the hole that I have created for myself and seek His love, a love that goes beyond anything that I could ever imagine.
In the past seven years, God has been continually faithful through my tears and during moments when I thought that I've reached the dead end and there was nothing left to hope for, God showed me that as long as my self-worth is founded in Him, I will never lack hope-- which I believe is truly the only reason why we wake up each day.
I must admit that before, I have often placed my worth in the guy I was dating, my job, my grades and my friends.
There is such freedom in knowing that those areas of my life: friendships, relationships, my job do not define me and is not dependent on me. I cannot make something stay in my life if God did not will it to be in my life in the first place.
Because of this truth, I have become freer in the sense that I no longer constantly seek the approval of people in order to enjoy my life. I have been trapped by that stigma for so long.
And of course, this realization does not really erase my past, but it does say one thing about it: God's grace covers it all.
That yes, I have done so many things in my past that I am ashamed of, but then again why should I hide in my shame?
My past only shows that no matter what i've done or how badly I have treated people because I was also broken inside, God has redeemed me from all of that and has chosen to love me despite all of my hidden shame.
His grace and His love was more than enough for me and without it, I would still be a walking mess.
So yes, I do have a past but thank God through Jesus, it is all washed by the blood.
Now that's what I call "a brand new beginning" :)