Therefore remove sorrow from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity. (Ecc 11:10)
Here it comes again - the anxiety. Only today and tomorrow left of my vacation. It has been a wonderful week - filled with absolutely nothing but time to talk to God (and watch some old movies). Where I was supposed to be and where I ended up are entirely two different places...but God knew where I needed to be, so that's where I am. Yet, here I sit in anticipation of things to come (again). I've forgotten how to live in the moment and put all things in His hands. That will take time - more time than I think I have! But I'm working on that...
In Ecclesiastes, King Solomon offers us some very insightful pieces of advice. This verse, as written, reminds us that everything we do matters. Every word we utter, every step we take, every thought that we bring into being matters. Many of the choices we make are irreversible (believe me, there are many I wish I'd thought twice about). They stay with us for our lifetime. What you do when you are young DOES matter. Our physical, moral and spiritual decisions made in haste (when we were young and restless) can and will haunt us when we are old (trust me on this one, folks - I am currently paying that price).
With all that said, it does NOT mean that we cannot overcome our ghosts and demons of the past. We can turn the page into a new chapter in life, but we can NEVER get back (nor take back) what has already been done. We can ask for and receive forgiveness, we can re-train ourselves to walk in His ways, we can learn and teach others by our mistakes, but we will always carry the scars of those earlier times with us. It is human nature, we cannot escape it. Those of us who have regrets and have had "second thoughts" will always have them. The trick is to learn to live with them. I'm sure that Peter didn't beat himself up for denying Jesus for the rest of his life. He knew what he had done and learned to live with it and moved forward and became one of the greatest examples of God's forgiveness. Judas, on the other hand, couldn't get past it.
So, where do we go from here? Forward! Do your very best to remind the enemy he doesn't win. Remind him that you belong to God, that Jesus will stand beside you no matter what! Remind him that all things ARE possible through Jesus. Remind him that you have been chosen. Remind him that you have a King who loves you and forgives you. And when all else fails - remind him of his future!