So many people live trapped in the past. They live weighed down never able to live at their fullest.
They carry hurts from past relationships.
They live defeated because of past failures.
They carry guilt and sometimes shame.
They live fearful that the past will repeat.
Sometimes they go to church to find answers and way too often are told they’re unworthy and God is angry.
And it leaves them just trying to survive with their dreams crushed.
Yet, that’s not the life we’re promised. We’re designed for so much more. Lives of joy, peace, healing, accomplishment and fullness. Life to the fullest.
Paul writes, “This is why it says: “When he ascended on high, he led captives in his train and gave gifts to men.” (Ephesians 4: 8 NIV)
It’s quoted from Psalms and is a picture of a king marching back into his capital after a glorious victory. The captured enemy soldiers parade behind him before his cheering people. And he brings the spoils of the war as gifts.
The people at home are recipients of what they didn’t deserve but received because they trusted in their king.
So it is with us. We don’t deserve to be set free from the enemies who attack us from the inside. But we are simply because we trust in our victorious king.
It comes as we focus on the one who is all powerful and promises rather than listening to our enemies.
And who are these enemies who’ve been defeated?
Past destructive relationships that left us feeling unworthy for anyone to love.
Moral failures that caused us to doubt our own self worth.
Career failures that left us feeling defeated and incapable.
Fears that we could never be accepted by God because of all our failures.
Yet Jesus, as our victorious king, has defeated each of these enemies. And he parades them in front of us to remind us they’re captured.
So when you hear that enemy whisper doubt in your ear think, “No I saw you defeated. I’m the child of the king who defeated you. I’m set free to live as a child of the king. And he has given me all the gifts I need to live life to the fullest.”
How has knowing your past is finished helped you live fully in the present?