They are the whispers of what we thought last night. They're the constant stabbing thought of what we did two months ago, two years ago, and two hundred years ago.
Then once and while we decide to replace them with thoughts of precious times, times when we laughed, when we sang, when we ate pumpkin pie and shared secrets with our friends. Those are the times that we like to remember...not the blurry, fuzzy past of our regrets.
What if there were a way I could be free from my blurry, fuzzy, ugly, mounting past; and be able to breathe through a day without that constant little voice grinding me down more and more.
What if there were a way I could be free from the sins of my past? the choices I made that I'm not proud of, the things I did in the spur of the moment. What if?
Up to the age of 13, I was haunted with the blurry reminders of yesterday's sin. I knew I was a sinner. I knew I was sinning, and it bothered me to where I was almost sick. Was there a way I could be relieved from my past, and simply live each and every day focusing on my future?
My past sins kept haunting me, and I knew I deserved to be punished for them. In fact, I longed to be saved from my sin so much so that I would cry out to the Lord on hard wood floor, hoping that my helpless-looking estate would draw God's attention. As if trying to act broken over my sin on the outside would make it so God would overlook my soul. Ha! Was I a fool to think I could hide my true estate from the Lord.
Below I'm going to give you my testimony on how He ground me to a powder, and then how He built me back up again. How He cast my past as far away from me as the East is from the West because of what He did for me on the cross. And He can cast away your past, too. If you trust Him to deliver you.
I grew up thinking I was right with God. After all, I hadn’t done any major sins. I had never murdered, or stolen anything, at least not anything bigger than a paperclip, and tried to be pretty sweet when I was around everyone but my own family. I thought I was a Christian because I had taped up some cute little fruits on my dead, disconnected branch, and thought that was sufficient.
I was a lie. In my heart, I was as far from God as I could be. I would sin, then promise that “next time” I would do better. Because I was raised in a Biblical home, I had the intellectual knowledge of a theologian, while my heart was a rock solid as Judas Iscariot’s. What changed?
Well, around 12 years old I felt a yearning to know that I was saved. Now up to that point I hadn’t tried to think about it much, but as I approached the verge of womanhood, I began to doubt whether my six-year-old profession of faith had meant anything at all. How could I know that the moment I died, I was going to Heaven with God? I didn’t know the answer to that question.
So I sought after God so hard that it felt terrible. Upon my Dad’s wise advise, I re-read 1 John about 7-8 times in a matter of a few months. But they were still just words to me. Words without meaning or value to my heart.
Oh but God! The sweetest words I can ever know. November 13th, 2010, in the middle of one of Pastor Adam’s sermons on God’s holiness, God gripped my heart fully. It was then that I realized how I had, just as Luther climbed the stone steps on his knees thinking that with each step he was a step closer to God, been thinking the same thing. Oh the mercy of God to show me that I was, just as a branch cut off from the Vine, dead without Him!
I poured out my sin and asked God to save me, trusting only in Jesus alone. Jesus suddenly tasted so sweet to me! His name now had meaning in my heart! That Christmas I truly knew what Christmas was supposed to mean.
God saved me from my sin and He connected me to the Vine, Jesus Christ! Before I was helpless, dead and shriveled, good for only the fire, whereas now I was saved, redeemed and connected to my source of Life, Jesus!
‘I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.
As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.
If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.
These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.’
I am so thankful that God plucked me out of the miry clay and placed me in His love. I abide in my Deliverer with joy.
How the Lord saved me from my sin is the same way He saves everybody else from their sins.
First, He broke me, ground me into a fine powder, in the process showing me that I was nothing,
Then He brought me in close to Himself, that I might see Him for Who He truly is, and in the process my crumbled heart was healed like new,
And last but certainly not the last of it, He works on me every single day that He might see Himself through my thoughts, actions and all.
Don't get me wrong. Every day I still seek the Lord because every day I still sometimes struggle with tough, yucky stuff that I'd really rather skip. But how else does a pearl get created? Through the clam getting a little, annoying piece of grain stuck 'neath it's shell. Yeah I bet that little grain of sand stings, it probably itches and isn't real comfortable...
But if that clam accepts the grain of sand, and it stays inside it's shell long enough, the result is a beautiful, piece of priceless beauty...the pearl.
Is it all right to break the news to ya''ll that I'm simply God's "pearl-in-process"? But through it all, this I know,
That my past is no longer my past, but it's Jesus Christ's past. Because He took the blame for my stupid, and ugly sin, what was once my past is no longer mine to claim but His to claim!
Jesus has already claimed my past as His! Praise Him for taking my place!
Therefore, I can truly thank Him, and tell the sins I committed long ago, and the ones even today, "Blurry past, you haunt me no more."
Praise the Lord!
Love His 'pearl-in-process',