Many of us seem stuck in the past, unable to let go of it. Consequently, we are unable to take hold of the wonderful things in store for us in the future. This is a tragic waste of life. Are you stuck in the past? Here are some of the signs.
You keep reminiscing about "the good old days" wishing you could return to them. You keep blaming yourself — or others — for past mistakes, and can't bring yourself to forgive either. You constantly wish you could have done things differently, replaying mistakes continuously. You hoard things, not discarding them even they are broken and useless. You look at the future with dread and the thought of change terrifies you.
How do we let go of the past and take hold of the future? Forgive yourself and others for mistakes you and they have made. God has forgiven us through Christ. We need to forgive ourselves and extend his forgiveness to others. It will free us of the chains that bind us and lift the burden of guilt off our shoulders. Guilt is not for the believer!
Get rid of old things, especially those that bring back painful memories. Sentimentality is not a bad thing, but if it keeps you tied to the past, it isn't good. So toss them out and you will experience a sense of lightness in days.
Be grateful for what you have. One of the reasons we think the old days were better is because we find these days tough, struggling with finances, ill health or other life issues. However, if we count our blessings, we will see that we have much to be grateful for.
Wake up every morning with a sense of anticipation, looking forward to the surprises God has in store for you each day. This can be new things to do or people to meet. Even if you are well worn in years, there is so much you can do with your time.
Don't be afraid to seek help if you need it. Christ has set us free from all prisons, but traumatic experiences can keep us trapped in the rubble. It won't hurt us to call out for help as we would if we were buried in a collapsed building. A good counselor will help set us free. Or just talk to someone who really loves you.
Finally, remember this lesson from Roy T Bennett. “The past is a place of reference, not a place of residence; the past is a place of learning, not a place of living.” So quit living in the past. The future looks bright ahead. But there's no time like the present.
May the Spirit be with you.