Holding Onto Your Past Creates Problems For Your Future

Are you holding onto your past?
Take a lesson from me, and jettison the junk.

 

 

I spent a good chunk of yesterday cleaning out the “toy closet.”

I haven’t had children at home for years.
Deep sigh …
followed by a leap for joy!
(Don’t judge, I am happy to have healthy, thriving, gainfully employed boys who’ve grown into men.)

I’m reclaiming all the real estate in my house previously dedicated to storing their paraphernalia.
I will no longer keep art projects from grade school,

football cleats from high school or dental models of lost retainers.

Yesterday, I cleared the last bastion of their territory … the toy closet.
Toys spanning the decades spilled out to be sorted and bagged up

in preparation of their move to someone else’s home.

Candyland, all the chess boards and the Monopoly game … out.
Beanie Babies, action figures and matchbox cars … out.
Glitter pens, coloring books and the potholder loom …  out.
Puzzles, sidewalk chalk and the abacus no one ever knew how to use … out!

Can I just tell you, it’s liberating.
I am giddy with glee!

We have lived in this wonderful old barn of a house for 30 years.

I had collected so much stuff that instead of managing it, it was managing me!

I piled more stuff on top of the old stuff until
I was afraid to open the closet doors and look inside.

Last night, the chaos collapsed on itself and
I was forced to either re-pile or deal with it.

Is that you, too?

Sometimes, we aren’t able to move into the future because we are bound by the past.

 

We want God’s best for our lives, but
the idea of taking out the garbage or
opening up old wounds or

forgiving an offense or
letting go of control or
admitting we’re wrong or
cutting our losses
is just too much to ask.

So

we keep the clutter or
the grudge or
the stronghold or
the addiction or
the secret or
the stuff

until 

it’s too painful or
too stinky or  

too big to manage and
it collapses on top of us.

God graciously (or impatiently) pushed me into
clearing space in my closet by tipping my neglected mess on top of me.

Finally,

it was more painful to keep the status quo than
make room for what God might lead me into if I was unencumbered.

This time it was my accumulation.
Other times, it has been letting go of my past for good.
Embracing the truth of His Love for me.
Believing that I am worthy of his acceptance.
Restoring a relationship by forgiving the offender.

Girlfriend, I don’t know what you’re holding onto or
avoiding because you’re afraid to unpack it,
but I’m here to tell you the truth.

Whatever “it” is,
it has got to be
Brought out,
Sorted through and
Sent packing.

Trust me,
You will feel better.

You might even be liberated!

What do you need to purge, give up, clean out or get rid of that’s holding you back? 
Leave a comment and let me know so I can encourage you! 

Scripture Refresher: “And no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined.” (Luke 5:37, NIV)

Prayer: God, help me release the past, clean up the messes and embrace new thinking so that I am ready for the marvelous life you have in store for me.  Amen.

Addendum:

Lest my boys read this and have a heart attack,
I kept the Uno game, the Little Tykes bus and the crate of Legos.  🙂
You never know, I might have grandchildren one day …