Our past can leave a trail of hurt, grief, anger, bitterness, and unresolved situations. For many of us, it’s easier to hold on than to let go. For many of us, we never learned how to let go. This is true for me in many aspects of my life.
This is true for people all over the world. These issues can be trauma, years of loneliness, many years of taking losses, and a pattern of broken relationships.
The more the issues pile on; the bigger the bag we carry around with us. We may carry the baggage of others at times. This is a hindrance to many believers and unbelievers.
As believers many of us are not at the maturity level we think we are. We often unravel our past to anyone who will listen. It is a daily struggle for a lot of us.
Let’s see what God says about holding on to a trail of hurt.
“If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear” (Psalm 66:18). This scripture is illustrating that there are issues that can interfere with our prayers. We don’t want the issues we hold to hinder our prayer life. The less we are holding on to, the more effective we are when we pray. An example is like having a bag on your back and trying to climb stairs or a mountain. The heavier the bag the more challenging the climb.
The issues that we have faced in our past can cause us to lack so much peace in our lives. It can cause anxiety, fear, doubt, and worry. It is important to know that the stress from it can cause physical issues in the body.
Paul’s illustration in Philippians is comforting and encouraging. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7).
I have spent many years holding on to things. I want to encourage someone through this message that forgiveness and letting go is liberating. It is easier to climb the mountains we face in life. Through the word and prayer we grow, mature, and can be a light to others. This is no easy concept and can be a life-long journey. God has equipped us with the tools to do it in His word. The things we faced years ago may still hurt us. The great thing is, God knew we would face hurt. He is the one that should carry our burdens.
God’s word illustrates it this way: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). Jesus is speaking about Him carrying our load for us. In Him, we can find peace and rest, and He will lighten our load.
I am reminded of my godmother who passed away six years ago from cancer who said to me “why do you worry, why are you not trusting God, God is supposed to be your everything”. Years later I can testify that worrying and holding on to things has no value or power. It is when we let go, that we have true freedom and become liberated.