Your past may hold some of the richest nuggets of treasures to equip you for the future. But it most likely also holds some of your greatest obstacles and blocks to moving into what God created you for.
All of us have failures we regret in our past. It is impossible to succeed without failure. A toddler would never learn to walk without ever falling. Success takes risks. Risks result in failure. That is the way of life. And like the toddler, we need to simply learn from the falls we have, get up, dust ourselves off and move along.
Some of us hang on to our past failures unable to forgive ourselves for them. It is hard to move forward when our past defines us. We need to make less of a deal about our failures. Don’t dwell on them a second longer than they have something to teach you.
This may sound strange for some of you. But if we are going to move into our best life, we also need to let go of our past successes. Like failures, they can hold you back. Have you ever heard people talk about the awesome soccer score they hit when they were on the high school football team? It was a great success. But they have never moved beyond that.[tweetthis]Letting go of our past accomplishments, opens us up to new failures to learn from.[/tweetthis]
Leaving that success behind them means opening yourself up to failure again. But if you are wanting to achieve all God designed you for, you have to open yourself up to learning new things again. Celebrate your success. Then release it and create a new goal. Become a person who is defined by your character. By who you are, not by what you have or have not done.
All of us have people who have hurt them. And forgiving them is a must in order to move ahead. Forgiveness costs. It gives people a free pass when they took something from you. But if you don’t, you will remain a victim, not someone who is free and in control of their future.
There is a story about an old tribe of people and the importance of freeing others. In this village, if it was deemed that a person had wronged someone greatly, they would tie the person up and the village would gather on the banks of the river, and watch as the offender got thrown into the river. And only the family that had been offended had the right to save this person from drowning. But in making that decision they were instructed like this: “You have the right to justice, and therefore, you are just in letting the offender drown. However, to save the man, is to save your future.”
No man can be free to live a great future, if we demand justice without mercy. In the end justice will kill us all. Mercy frees us as we free others.
If you let me become a bit cheesy, rewrite history as “His Story.” When we learn from our past and release it into God’s hand, then God will use it to write His Story. “We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God.” Romans 8:28 NASB
But if you can’t release the past, you will become bitter. And being bitter is definitely not loving God. So bless your past. Say great things about it. Become thankful for it. Even for some of the painful things. Because really, they are all things God is using now to redeem us for His best life in the present and the future.
And just because this may be helpful for you, go over to Michael Hyatt and grab the free ebook: The 8 Strategies Super-Successful High Achievers Use to Prepare for the New Year