By: Curt Klingerman
The world says, “experience is the best teacher.” However, for the believer, the Holy Spirit is the Best Teacher Who uses experience as part of His curriculum.
That being said, it is important that we filter our experiences through Him. While it is equally important to leave the past in the past, part of the process includes gaining the understanding of the experience involved. What lessons can be drawn from them? This actually facilitates the letting go process, as it gives clarity to events in our lives. It may be something as simple as learning some things were out of our control, and we need to stop taking responsibility for what happened. Likewise, the lessons learned can help us from repeating mistakes, and so on.
If we do not allow the Holy Spirit to speak to us concerning our past, our past can be used against us. Unfortunately, because of an improper perspective, one’s past can cause one to limit God in his or her present. When things go awry, or appear to have gone awry, it can make it difficult to trust God in current circumstances that are similar to past ones. Some people believe they are doomed to repeat their past because they have not allowed the Lord to give them the wisdom and understanding they need. If they feel that God is the blame for their hurts and failures, there is will be no trust for the present or future. Likewise, if they feel they failed God and blame themselves without learning from it, they will not trust they can succeed in the present. They lose sight of God’s redemptive power. They fail to realize He restores what has been lost or stolen. While it is best not to ask why in the sense of questioning God, there are a number of times He wants to answer that question. Of course, we need to trust Him regardless if we know the why or not. We must embrace the Who if we are going to successfully navigate through life.
Without learning the lessons that the Holy Spirit wants to teach us, it would be easy to use our past against our identity. Face it, when we feel like we failed God, we don’t much feel like His children. If we lose sight of our relationship because of it, we won’t be confident in our current state of affairs. One of the things He wants us to learn is that the Father’s love is unconditional. When we realize His love is not designed to be deserved, we will be confident to receive His forgiveness. Instead of running away from Daddy (Abba), we will run to Him if we fall and skin our knees. Of course, this leads us to another lesson. He can keep us from falling. Jude 1:24-25 Now to Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, 25. To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.
Because of God’s redemptive power, your present and future are not contingent on your past. If anything, God will use it to build a brighter tomorrow. Do not equate your past with your present. They are not the same, regardless of how similar they may be.
We learn from the raising of Lazarus from the dead that some final events are not final after all (see John 11:1-44). God still uses our experiences for the present. Somethings that we consider over, are not over. God in His timing will bring life from what we consider dead. We need to consider those things over that He considers over. Nonetheless, because God is eternal and not chained to time, He can bring life to our past and use it in our present and future. Just like prophecy, God’s timing is involved with everything. Just because something doesn’t “turn out” as we would like, we need to realize that He’s not done yet. We’re not home. “That” is not always “that”; unless, He says so.