Many people you speak with may bring up something from their past. They may use it as an excuse not to do something or not to improve their lives. Examples include, “I can’t go to college, no one in my family has gone.”
“I drink because my dad drinks, that’s how we spend time together.”
“My anger issues are just like my moms, I learned it from her.”
“I grew up in a smoking house so I just started also.”
“My dad was never around, so I don’t need to dad now.”
“I was abused as a child and I will not let anyone touch me again.”
“That’s the way we’ve always done it.”
We can come up with an excuse to do or not to do anything. Why not add, “I’m never eating fruit from a tree; look what happened to Adam and Eve.”
Historians believe that past dictates the future. I think we use the past to learn and make progress in the future. We learn from our mistakes as well as improve on trial and error. Because humans are making decisions, we are going to have major mistakes.
We cannot let our past define us. We are not smokers or alcoholics because our parents are. We are not thieves and liars because our don’ts don’t love us. We are not created to model after our parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents. We don’t have to live constantly regretful over mistakes and situations in our lives.
Living in the past will keep us stuck in the past. Don’t continue drinking every Saturday night because that’s what you’ve done for the past year. Our lives are meant to be meaningful, purposeful, constantly changing. We have a unique plan to fulfill that only we can. Our enemy wants nothing more than to keep you stuck in the same place. He doesn’t want you to grow, mature, think and become what God has planned. God’s plan of purpose will result in changing lives, caring hearts, intentional choices, and giving God glory.
It is so easy to do the same thing, be the same thing, act the same way, and go to the same places. There’s no effort, thinking, or change needed to stay the same. There’s also no life in it.
When God had enough of the evil in Sodom, He chose to destroy it. Abraham begged God to save it if He could find just 10 righteous people. He could not find them, but Abraham pleaded for his nephew, Lot, who lived there. Angels spoke to Lot and told him the city was going to be destroyed and he needed to leave with his family—Now! His wife was so torn, leaving her home, her life, her friends, even though the town was crazy wicked. The angels told them, “don’t look back”. Fire from heaven poured upon the city and it exploded into flames. People began to scream in terror and beg for their lives.
Lot and his family were running away to safety. When we hear cries for help, what is a natural reaction? God’s angels said “don’t look back”. Lot did not ask why. Angels didn’t explain and then ask, “Do you understand?” The instructions were clear—“don’t look back”! So many folks don’t accept commands. We want to know WHY and what will the consequences be. In the entire bible, God’s directions were commands with the occasional reason for it. (“Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise” Proverbs 19:20). When we don’t follow commands we die. We die spiritually (“But you must not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die” Genesis 2:17) and we physically die (“But Lot’s wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt” Genesis 19:26).
Learn to take and follow the commands of God. Do what He says and live in His promise of who you are. (“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” Jeremiah 29:11). We have the privilege to approach God’s throne as His child and ask questions. (“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows” James 1:17). God wants to give us His love, peace and blessings. So know that each day is a new day and God is ready to bless your life and guide you through this difficult wicked world, and remember, “don’t look back”!