Where We’ve Been

 A good friend and I were talking today on the phone. In the midst of our conversation we started discussing past mistakes. Who hasn’t made mistakes in their marriage, in training their children, with finances, and such? We have all made poor decisions throughout life. This was the subject of our discourse. At one point in our exchange, I shared with her something that Jim Sammons once said to my husband and I. “God’s blessings are not based on how much we have done right but rather on which direction we are going.” I have carried around this little piece of encouragement for sometime, recalling it when the Enemy tries to remind me of my past failures. 

 Think about this for a moment. God is concerned with the path we are currently on. Those times we have walked upon the pathway of poor decisions and sin should only serve as a reminder of where we’ve been. It should not define who we are now. I can truly thank the Lord for those times in my past. Why? Because I have learned from them. I tell my children often that the best lessons are the ones learned. Would I make the same decisions again if I had it to do over? Of course not. But I have become stronger in my faith because of it. I have been shown the light of victory and I have been given a testimony. I can thank God for that.   

Think about this as well.  God desires us to use those poor decisions in our past to help teach others the truth and to point them to God. After King David repented of his sin against God of adultery, murder, lies, and covetousness he wrote in Psalm 51: 

  “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.”  

 

But he didn’t stop there. In verse 13 King David said, “Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.” How easy would it have been for King David to simply say, “I’ve messed up. I’ve made poor decisions. I’ve sinned greatly. God can’t bless me anymore. God will never use me.”? I believe this is what the Enemy wants us to think. But remember God’s blessings are not based on how much we have done right but rather on which direction we are going. Does that mean that there will not be consequences for our past mistakes? No! There are always consequences. But God is good and His merciful kindness is great toward us. 
 

So, my prayer is simple. Lord, lead me in paths of righteousness, for Your name’s sake. (Psalm 23:3)

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