“No Better Yesterdays”
When I preach and teach, I feel compelled to share what I’ve learned. Now, that’s not always a lot! But I feel like a big part of life is learning, and when I discover something I feel called to share it. It’s with that heart that I planned Losing Weights, Galilee’s sermon series about how to deal with the emotional and spiritual baggage that we all carry with us.
I’m glad that some of you contacted me about the series. It seems that speaking about subjects like guilt, shame, regret, and anxiety has landed with you.
I’m no expert. I’m not a trained clinician. But I have—because we all have— personal experience with each of these common problems. Let me tell you, I’ve had periods of my past blighted by negative feelings.
I have a friend in the recovery community who told me about a quote shared at twelve step meetings: “I have abandoned all hope for a better yesterday.”
No better yesterdays! There’s such wisdom in that!
So many of us invest time and energy in what happened to us in the past, when we cannot change a single thing about yesterday. But rather than ignore what has befallen us, I believe our faith calls us to learn from the baggage we carry, and let God’s wisdom help lighten our load going forward.
What amazes me about emotional wounds is that they can persist for so long. One time I broke my wrist—and that hurt. Still, I was in high school, so young of body and spirit, and in six weeks I felt as good as new. You’d need an x-ray to see that there remain internal fractures that have healed imperfectly or not at all. With our emotions, of course, we all have powerful x-ray vision. We can always see through our own surface happiness to what weighs on us internally. Funny how that goes.
Evidence of injury can persist for years.
So, this is what I’ve learned: with God, there is healing. Not just on the surface, and not just in our physical bones. On every level. No matter what sort of pain I carry around—fear, regret, blame—my walk with God in Christ has made all the difference. It’s a relationship that can serve as an anchor. I’m tossed around in a storm of anger, frustration, tears; remembering Christ calms me and stills the storm. He has gotten me through storms in the past. He promises to get me through the worst storms of all. I believe Him.
What has surprised me and might surprise you is that the very weight that pressed down on you yesterday can serve as a doorway to a deeper relationship with God and a better life right now! The very issue that has been heavy on your heart may lead you to a new insight, a growth spurt, or a place where you can help a fellow sufferer.
Hand yesterday’s weight to God and be carried toward a happier, more realistic, more forward-looking view of yourself. I’d be overjoyed to help you do that.
Pastor Jason Duley
Send Pastor Jason your thoughts about “Losing Weights.” If you’d like to talk to him about anything on your mind or heart, he’d love to hear from you.