I have a brand new calendar on my desk. I am filling it in with appointments, notes, and reminders. I look forward to the things that will happen this year. As exciting as it was to get my new calendar in place, I found myself wondering what to do with last year’s calendar. There were so many wonderful memories on those pages. God did some amazing things last year. I saw appointments with people who ended up giving their lives to Jesus. I saw notes on hospital visits, Bible classes, and preaching assignments.
It was then that I realized I could spend the rest of the day enjoying the good things from the year before. I could end up spending several days/weeks/months living in the past. There were some good days last year. I could live in the past. Of course, then I would end up ten years from now still talking about what I had done a decade ago.
And I found that there were bad days on last year’s calendar. Some recorded, some not. There were missed opportunities, poor choices, and bad decisions. It would be possible to spend days/weeks/months lost in the regret, shame, and guilt of those days from the past that were not so good.
So I decided to throw away last year’s calendar. I would remember the good times with thankfulness, but I would start with a new calendar to record the wonderful things that would happen this year. And I would hope to learn from the past mistakes, but I would not let them keep me from doing better this year.
I want to be freed for the future, not chained to the past.
Then it dawned on me. My calendar was a representation of life as a Christian. If your past has shame, guilt, and regret — you need to know that God offers forgiveness and healing. He offers new life. He lets you start new. Your future is full of plans that God has prepared for you to do. Healing and forgiveness for past, purpose for your present, hope for your future.
If this is the good news you have been looking for, then write me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or check out our blog at www.hopeforlife.org.