1 Samuel 15: 35, 16: 1, And Samuel went no more to see Saul until the day of his death. Nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul, and the LORD regretted that He had made Saul king over Israel. Now the LORD said to Samuel, "How long will you mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons." NKJV
We all go through difficult seasons in life, and we've all made mistakes and committed sins, which have caused us great heartache. Just as the Lord regretted that He had placed Saul as king over Israel, we, too, have situations that have arisen in our own lives which cause regret and shame. When you read the scriptures, you can see a stark contrast between Samuel's response to God's decision to remove Saul and God's response to it. The prophet mourned for a while; however, God was ready to move on. In fact, God already had a "son" in mind who would replace the disgraced leader of Israel.
There are many attributes that I personally love about God's nature; nonetheless, there's one attribute that I dearly love and that is the one which gives every person on earth the ability to move on in life. The unmerited favor of God (GRACE) gives fallen humanity a chance to start over and make things right. God's grace grants us forgiveness for our past mistakes and empowers us "to turn the page."
If today, you find yourself living with grief and regret over your past, and you feel stuck there, then there is hope for you in Christ. God is in the redemption "business" of turning hopelessness into hope. It is His will and His desire to come into your life and redeem your past. No one can go back into their past and undo what has already taken place. Even so, God has promised us that He will remove our sins and failures through His grace and will remember them no more... if we repent and accept His plan for us.
We can either decide to live in the regret of our past mistakes and mourn about the death or loss of what has been, or we can align ourselves with God and turn the page on a new chapter in our lives. If we choose to move on with God and to fulfill His plan and purpose, then His joy will become our strength. Satan doesn't want us to break free from regrets over our past because he can use those sins as weight. Satan enjoys holding us in bondage and wearing us down over things that we have done. In contrast, God wants us to be strong and filled with His joy.
We're instructed in Hebrews 12: 1-2, "Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." NKJV
If you allow Him, God will give to you a garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. It's okay! Let the past go; give it to Jesus and watch as He turns the page on your life.
Moving on in Christ,
Pastor Asa Dockery