Getting Past Your Past
Read: Romans 8:1-4
Have you ever made a mistake or done something wrong and no matter what you do that thing you did continues to haunt you? You try to move on, but you can’t get past the fact that you made that mistake. You take one step forward then two steps back. You try to get past your past, but nothing seems to work.
We’ve all been there, but we don’t have to keep living in the past. Paul, a Christian-killer turned Jesus-follower, writes in Romans 8:1, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
If anyone knew what it was like to have a past you’re not proud of, it was Paul.
Acts 7 records the death of Stephen, a Christian missionary who was stoned to death. Overseeing the execution was Paul. He went by Saul back then, and he traveled the area killing Christians for their beliefs. One day, Jesus appeared to Paul in a vision. Jesus changed Paul’s name and his heart.
Like Paul, we are free from condemnation because of Jesus. We are free from the sins of our past. We no longer have to live captive to our past and can walk freely into our future.
If you don’t let your past die, it will never let you live. You don’t have to walk in guilt and shame. Get past your past. Walk in the freedom that Jesus has given you.
• How has your past affected the way you see yourself today? What are some labels you give yourself based on who you used to be?
• Sometimes condemnation comes from within, sometimes it comes from others. What would it look like today for you to embrace who Jesus says you are, not who others say you are?
• Is there anything you need to forgive yourself for? Anything you need to confess to Jesus and ask forgiveness for? Take a few minutes and pray about anything that might be weighing you down today.
Avoid Life On Autopilot
Have you ever gotten in your car, driven to your destination and not remembered how you got there? Your thoughts wandered somewhere else and your brain went in autopilot mode while you drove from Point A to Point B.
Just like we have to fight to stay present behind the wheel, we have to fight the temptation to go into autopilot spiritually. Hebrews 2:1 says, “We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away.” Paying careful attention requires an active listening and our full focus. We want to protect ourselves from drifting away from our faith.
We do this by listening to God and doing what He says. In Matthew 4:4, Jesus says God’s word is as important to our survival as food. God speaks to us as we read the Bible, pray and listen to His voice.
As a Christian, we know our final destination. However, we don’t want to drift and miss all that God has for us on the journey. Our walk with Jesus must be intentional.
• Are there any areas of your life where you need to pay more careful attention to keep from drifting in your relationship with Jesus?
• Is there anything God is asking you to do that you need to follow through on today?