Do you ever wish you could “go back to how things were”?
Most of us can recall days when things were easier…better… Usually, we’re remembering a stretch when relationships were stronger, everyone we loved was around, ‘bill’ was a guy’s name not something we had to pay, and chocolate was free. It’s tempting to not only spend time wishing for a return to the old days, but to also spend energy trying to recreate the feelings and settings of the past.
It doesn’t work; but it doesn’t work for a reason. God doesn’t want us to “go back” in our relationships…not with each other and not with Him.
When we’re straining to get back, it’s often to escape what is. Pain, anger, loss, disillusionment, betrayal…these can be so disheartening that we can—mistakenly—think, “If only things could go back to the way they were.” Not only can we not go back, but renewed purpose is found in embracing the truth that adventure lies ahead.
How can we be people who look forward instead of back?
It’s about taking the pain, disappointment and scars and creating something new.
- Often, we will stay in a situation that is not good for us simply because it’s all we know. When life leaves a mark on us due to our circumstances, we must decide: Will we can keep picking at the wound, or will we allow it to become only a reminder of what we’ve learned? 2 Corinthians 5:17
It’s about knowing other people and knowing God in new ways because you’re different.
- As we learn from the shifts in our lives, we cannot help but be molded by them. If we are open to growing instead of longing to go back, we become more interesting…and more interested in others. Some of life’s lessons can only be learned in the hard, dark places. God is there. If we are open to it, we gain new understandings of Him when He meets with us there and loves us through it. Isaiah 43:19
It’s about knowing wisdom comes with experience.
- While I wish the hard things in my life had never happened, I wouldn’t trade what I learned because they did. I remember this when new difficulties come. I know that I will gain from the experience because I know God will be there to guide me. Romans 8:28
It’s about knowing we shouldn’t long to go back; we should long to learn and grow.
- Whatever we feed is that which grows in our lives. If we constantly are looking in the rear-view mirror at what was, we’ll miss the beauty of what’s around us and ahead of us. If we are determined to only glance back for safety (to recall the lessons we learned when they are needed), we are open to continuing the grand adventure God has in store. It requires us to have the discipline to only feed thoughts that take us forward. 2 Corinthians 10:5
When we’re tempted to say, “I wish things could go back to the way they were”, I want to encourage us, instead, to say, “Because of what I’m going through, I’m looking for the meaning in this and looking forward to what lies ahead.” This isn’t a positive-thinking mantra. This is a faith statement that will lead to our hearts’ desires.
I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences. Write a comment…men and women invited!!! Also, be sure to subscribe to this blog and you’ll get updates when new posts come out.