"Treat people as if they were what they ought to be, and help them to become what they are capable of being."
-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Most of us would read this and think about how we are treating others- which is good- but how many of us treat ourselves this way? I know for me, most of the ambushes on my life were from my own thoughts condemning me over things that no longer matter, that no longer exist. It's easy to let a thought grow so big, that we can't see past it anymore, leaving us paralyzed.
There is nothing we can do about our past except learn the lessons and move on, and it's often the moving on part that we have trouble with. After all, if we move on from our past, then we can no longer find our identity in it. It may be negative, but at least it's something we can grasp and comprehend.
Grasping onto something that you can't see or feel is a scary thought; that's why we call it faith. But when we are courageous enough to take a chance on who God says we are, even when we don't feel like it's true, slowly we begin to see what we always longed and hoped for coming to pass in our lives. We learn more about who we really are and are usually gloriously surprised, and yet, strangely at peace, like coming home after a long journey.
"This is as true in life as it is in everyday battle: we are given one life and the decision is ours whether to wait for circumstances to make up our mind, or whether to act, and in acting, to live".
-General Omar N. Bradley
In a world that is constantly trying to convince you of who you are and who you will always be, our thought-life becomes a battle ground where a war against our true identity is fought. It's times like these when we shouldn't limit ourselves to our mere thoughts, but rather think with the Word of God; it's certainly been around longer.
In honor of springing ahead the clock- I must admit, not my favorite- I say we also decide to spring ahead from our past, our mistakes, worries, fears, insecurities, negative thoughts, and jump whole-heartedly into our identity in Christ; who we have always hoped we might be. It takes intentionality to walk away from something so comfortable, but a cage was never meant to be your home and bars were never meant to hold you back. Let's let go of what has been, and spring ourselves into what we are capable of being.
"That means you must not give sin a vote in the way you conduct your lives. Don't give it the time of day. Don't even run little errands that are connected with that old way of life. Throw yourselves wholeheartedly and full-time... into God's way of doing things. Sin can't tell you how to live. After all, you're not living under that old tyranny any longer. You're living in the freedom of God."
-Romans 6:12-14 The Message