Forget It | Devotion #6: Who I Used to Be
Katrina Young | Nursery & Pre-K Director
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
As a new believer, I was given the book Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan. In this book, the main character, “Christian,” is weighed down by the burden of his sin. When he came to the cross, the sin and burden fell from his shoulders, rolled down a hill, and disappeared into an empty tomb. The story represents what takes place when we confess our sin to God. He lifts it off our shoulders, takes it away, and remembers it no more.
In a few weeks, I will be attending my 40th high school class reunion. I am from a very small town in Indiana, so it goes without saying, my class was very small as well. As little towns go, there is not much that is private in your life. Our class knew each other very well, and if we were not close friends, we still were very aware of the details of each other’s lives. “Nothing was a secret!” At this point in our lives getting together is a brief trip down “Memory Lane.” Yet, none of us are the people that we once were, and in getting reacquainted, I am certain I am not alone in hoping there is very little memory of who I once was but rather, want them to see who I am today, a child of God.
We are reminded of forgiveness in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Perhaps the most difficult part of this Scripture is allowing ourselves to let go of our own transgressions and guilt so that we can walk in freedom. Forgiving ourselves can be a bigger challenge because we are aware of the state of our own hearts and minds when we sinned. It is only through His abundant grace that He chooses to forgive us. By reliving the past and trying to carry the weight of our own sin, we can hinder our spiritual growth and prevent ourselves from doing what we are called to do. In the Psalms, King David wrote about God’s grace in saying, “As far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12). If God does not hold our sin to us once we repent from it, why should we?
My prayer is that as I go through my daily walk, that people will see Christ in me and not the image of who I used to be. As C. S. Lewis wrote, “Everyone says forgiveness is a lovely idea, until they have something to forgive.”