Yesterday can often be distorted in our memory, lying to us that our greatest days are in the past, not in the future. When we struggle with depression, anxiety, and other forms of brokenness, we often think back to the days when we weren’t in so much pain…Or so we remember.
Also, yesterday’s failures and mistakes can haunt us as we move into the future, lying to us that we are damaged goods.
The truth is, yesterday is gone. Yesterday has no power over who you become today and in your future. Yes, many of our choices in the past have brought us to where we are, but the choices we make from this moment forward create the future, not our failures or success in the past.
Depression and other mental health battles often tell sufferers the lie that the future will never hold better days, healing, hope, and beautiful experiences. Yet, the truth is that we always have hope, we always can dream, we have never been unloved, our lives matter more than we know, and we have such great potential for the future.
“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.” – C.S. Lewis
You are not living for yesterday, nor are you moving towards a hopeless future. You are a living work of art right now – this very moment. Each decision you make now will create who you become tomorrow. Some of your choices in your past may have brought you to some of the heartache of today, but yesterday has no right to determine who you will become.
Yesterday can often be an enemy reminding us of our past mistakes and failures. Yesterday can also disguise itself as “the good old days”, stealing our attention from today and tomorrow.
Yesterday is dangerous when it takes precedent over today and the potential for the future.
One of the most incredible conversion stories in Scripture is that of Paul (formerly Saul), going from “persecutor of the church” to “Jesus freak leading churches and teaching about Jesus in the public squares”. His past didn’t define his future. Instead, he changed the world with the message of divine love.
One of my favorite movies of all-time is “The Natural”, with Robert Redford as Roy Hobbs. Roy was a “natural” at the game of baseball, but his promising career was sidelined when he was shot by a woman and framed with her murder after she killed herself. The story picks up in his late 30’s after he’s been released, yet many years of being able to play baseball have been lost. We journey with this aging baseball player as he returns to his first love, changes the losing culture of the New York Knights (a fictional team), and wins the pennant with a massive home run that breaks the stadium lights! And to top it all off with some sugary goodness, he falls in love with Glenn Close – his old gal from his teenage years. I mean, there’s gotta be a love interest to keep the sappy viewers entertained (although, Sandra Bullock would have been a better choice…just saying).
The past has no right to your future. Yesterday may have been glorious, or yesterday may have been a living hell. Regardless of the past, we have the beauty of today and the hope for tomorrow that is far more important than the yesterdays we leave behind.
Who will you be today as you move towards tomorrow?