Self-inflicted wounds, and all other sins, by faith and trust in Christ as Savior and Lord are covered by His blood, including yours! Then why are there still consequences? How can I put the past in the past with constant reminders of what I have done or the pain of my actions invading each day? How do I Dance with the Scars when I go home to an empty house every day, or my kids won’t speak to me, or someone I hurt won’t let me show them I am a changed person. We have been dealing with the emotional and spiritual side of being freed from being a P.O.W. but what about the practical side?
As I mentioned there are memories that pop up in my mind at random times, they are not things the devil brings up when I am working through something God wants to change in me, or just when I am down or in a dry season, sometimes the devil throws my past in my face when things are going great. He loves to do this to me when I am driving to church to preach. This makes an important point for it identifies for us that Satan will use our past and forgiven sin as a weapon in spiritual warfare. But one thing I can say for sure, the devil has never been able to bring up my past when I was engaged in doing the work of the Lord. Preaching, praying with someone, counseling, witnessing, these are spiritual things that the past cannot penetrate with memories or feelings of shame and despair. Simply put; When battling the failures of the past do something for God in the immediate present. Go tell someone about Jesus, do something for a person in need and tell them about Jesus. Visit the sick and imprisoned, clothe the poor, and do something that God has called all His children to do that requires his Divine power.
It may seem like the answer in each chapter is to serve God and that is because to a degree, it is! How I wish Christians would understand the power of serving God! How it glorifies Him and blesses you and the Devil cannot stop, hinder or impede the will of God. If you have a past that you would give anything to change like I do, have two choices; spend the rest of your days wishing it would’ve never happened, or live the rest of your days thanking God that you’re completely forgiven. One definitely feels better than the other.
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” – Matthew 5:16
Doing “good works for God’s glory” is not just obedience, it’s also spiritual warfare and all forms of warfare require weapons. So for any who may be experiencing the pains of the past because of the actions of your flesh, remember;
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds 2 Corinthians 10:3-4
For some of us the past is part of present warfare and it cannot be battled with emotions and questions and longings for things to be as they once were, it must be considered spiritual combat and requires weapons that are not carnal. I know more than one mother who has had drugs cost them parental rights, I know more than one father who has allowed lust to destroy his marriage and family. I know of those who did things before they were saved that they still experience the consequences of and I also know this, every one of them who are Christians would do anything to change the past. I also know that those same people can be divided into two groups, those who the past controls and those who have control in spite of their past. Some of you may need to switch groups, some reading may be living in the shadows of a sinful past when God has a glorious, even though at times painful, present. I know people who have done terrible things and paid for it and still do who are effective and powerful servants of the Lord. Does the past still hurt, yes, are they often reminded of it, yes. While their pasts may be different from one another they all employed the same weapon to combat becoming a POW, and that is, they serve God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength, and so can you.
Excerpt from “Dancing With the Scars” now available on Amazon.