“History” is a loaded word.
I’m not talking about American history or world history. I’m talking about MY history. YOUR history.
So, like I said: “History” is a loaded word.
Relationships and friendships. Jobs and careers. Life changes. Ups. Downs. Joy. Pain. Memories. Wins. Fails. Hopes. Things we laugh at. Things we cry about.
Everything about our “history” carries weight.
You can spend hours thumbing through photos of that history or swapping stories with old friends. But when what was once “present” now slips into “past,” you might find yourself hurting. Maybe you see new people living out roles you once held. This can be a big thing if you’re talking about a relationship or a career. Maybe you think of a thousand ‘what ifs’ – unrealized possibilities that now haunt you to the point that you hesitate to make new choices.
Maybe the past was also good. Maybe even great. But, there’s the glaring fact that it is now gone.
See, “history” is funny that way.
Most of the time, we keep telling ourselves how much we can’t wait just to get through a season of our life. Maybe it’s painful. Maybe it’s destroying us, and moving on is the right thing to to do. Or maybe we just can’t wait to see what is next. So we do it. We dare. We leap out on faith.
Yet, mid-leap, we can still hang on. Even as our future unfolds, we often cling to the past with a vise-like grip. We feel an ache every time we see others succeed where we did not. Our hearts scream every time we feel an old friendship slipping away – whether it’s something as simple as being un-followed on Facebook by “friend” (weird how that hurts), or something much colder and closer to reality: That we are no longer needed by that past. It has moved on without us.
So, why still live there?
If you feel overwhelmed by your “history,” then – Let. It. Go.
Quit checking Facebook and Twitter statuses. Quit asking questions. Don’t drive by that old house or building or office. Celebrate the new future of those moving along a different path. Time is moving forward. Always. Embrace it. Do what you have not yet done. Remember, even at one time, your past was once an unknown future in and of itself. Everything eventually becomes history. Even what lies ahead. So don’t run from it. Don’t stay lodged in a season of history that will never be again. Make new friends. Find new successes. DARE!!
YES – we can maintain friendships that last lifetimes and survive even great distances. Yes, paths may cross with people as we move on – in both good ways and bad. Never leave in the past those who are moving with you into your present.
But let history become history. Let it guide you only inasmuch as it can be a teacher – what went right, what went wrong, and how to adapt the next time.
But move on.
Time already Is.
I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. (Philippians 3:13b-14)