Rewrite Your Life
Unfortunately, it is not possible to rewrite our lives. Once it is lived, it cannot be relived. We live in a linear time continuum.
Our past is past, however. That is good news. We can never take back spoken word. We are not able to undo actions taken. No one is immune to faux pas, errors in judgements, miscalculations, or errors under pressure. Everyone makes mistakes. So, what is the Good News: mercies are new every morning.
Whether it is parenting issues or business decisions you’re struggling with, everyday is an opportunity to do better, be better, serve more, and be fulfilled in your chosen vocation. Each of us has the opportunity to start every new day with focus and clarity. We choose. We decide how we will handle all that life throws at us.
When we are dealing with the consequences of our actions and the irrevocable impact that has had on others, we can recoil and retreat or we can stand up and refocus. “What does this make possible?” says Michael Hyatt. That simple statement can change the trajectory of your life and the lives of those around you.
I don’t know a soul who doesn’t have regrets. Many of us have done or said things that we are not proud of. Many of us have taken paths the we wish would have been different. Some of us, especially if we suffered child sexual abuse or sex trafficking or engaged in prostitution, have issues related to trauma. Trauma bonds may have kept us in relationships that were destructive and demoralizing for us and for our families.
The Scripture says to honor your father and your mother. That can be difficult. It might seem impossible. If a parent has abused you or others, the thought of honoring them is repugnant. I would suggest that honoring them might be possible, if we use their example of what not to do -to live our lives better.
I do not think we have any obligation to defend the actions of our family members. We can acknowledge the tragic decisions they might have made, without diminishing their dignity as a human being. Perhaps, a woman in your family had prostituted herself to feed the family in desperate times. Their desperation and survival instincts are commendable in life threatening circumstances. Her sacrifice for her family, though as damaging as it is, may have saved generations of people.
I would never advocate for such a deed. In fact, I oppose it as vehemently as I do abortion. But let’s face it, these things have happened. It is their past and our past. There is no way to rewrite it. Every single one of us has been directly impacted by such grave decisions. It is not permissive to offer compassion and grace to those who have made such mistakes. Don’t we want to be afforded the same?
There are so many demands on our time, attention, and our wallets. The one demand that is ever present on my mind is the call to be perfect, even as our Father in Heaven is perfect. It isn’t about being perfectly moral or perfectly holy or even perfect in behavior. The call is to love perfectly, without partiality and without restrictions or stipulations.
As parents, we demand our children comply with certain rules. We insist that they eat and we make sure they fulfill obligations of school or etiquette. The goal isn’t that they would do well for our sakes, but for theirs. In some cases a narcissistic parent demands more. That parent might see their children as an extension of themselves and therefore, love is not only obligatory, but its reciprocation has conditions.
Our Heavenly Father is not so. His demands are only and always for our own good. He will let us go. We can do our own thing. He will be there to receive us with open arms and a generous Spirit, when we see the error of our ways. Forgiveness and redemption is just the beginning.
When we acknowledge Him in all our ways, He directs our paths and leads us in paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake. In other words, By His love for His love, He will help us to be at peace with ourselves and with others. We are no longer tied to the demands of this world, but we have a different worldview. We can see the innate dignity and the immeasurable value of every human being.
Rewriting our lives may not be possible, but we can write the future for ourselves and for those who come after us. No matter how we try to change how we portray what happened in the past, it is what it is. Authentic history is messy. It isn’t crisp and clear. We are people, after all. We are not monolithic, but dynamic and we have a huge range of intelligence, creativity, and drive. Each person is unique and created for a purpose.
Let us so live to fulfill the purpose for which we were created. To that end, I will be rewriting my first book and less prolific here and on social media. Look for a survey next week. We’ll figure out the best day and time to meet here together.
As stated, we cannot rewrite our past. I will attempt to write my story in such a way as to be a light in the window. I keep an electric candle in my front window, as a continuous reminder that not all are free. The myth that the underground railroad stations had them is quite compelling, but if they had, the slave traders would have found them out.
So, we must live our lives, not revealing all things to all people while it’s happening, but after the lessons appear. When we’ve learned from that mistake or someone else’s, then we should share it. That way, we increase the learning without bogging down in the mire of the opinion and knee-jerk reactions. Social media is wrought with drama and explosive comments, made before careful consideration. We live in the time spoken of by Daniel the Prophet, the “knowledge explosion.” It is ironic that schools are turning out kids who cannot read, write, or think critically, but they have so much random information at their fingertips.
We can rewrite the trajectory of our lives by making small incremental changes. Every day is a new day.
What will you do?