A Clean Slate
I thought the other day as I wiped off my whiteboard to start into a new list of activities, how easy it was to wipe away the black marker. But it is harder to wipe away mistakes, unkind words or past troubles.
I remember listening to Tony Campolo a number of years ago when I first took my halting steps toward a faith in Christ. He reminded the audience of the Nixon tapes that were erased. No longer could anyone know what words were actually spoken in his office during the Watergate affair. Then Tony looked directly at me (I felt like he was looking at me) and said: “Well, God can erase the tape of your past!”
Those words have remained stamped in my mind. But I questioned, “Could all my past mistakes, troubles, and feelings be erased like that tape?”
This erasure did not happen overnight. I would go to God again and again with the same past – pleading for those memories to be gone. They would resurface over and over.
A few times at women’s conferences we would have a speaker who would do a similar talk and ask us to write down on paper those things that bothered us. Then we would file up to the front with our papers and either put them in a garbage bin, or lay them at the foot of the Cross.
I can’t remember when I realized that those memories were fading, were not eating at me, were not pushing down my shoulders and weighing down my soul. But somewhere along the path with God – He released me from them. I accepted His grace and I stepped into the peace and freedom of Christ.
Do you know what I mean? Have you been there? Are you still in the walking stage or have you been able to be free with God erasing the pain of the past.
Such a vivid and tangible reminder of grace! And how awesome that in Christ, each and every day is a new day to begin again and follow whole-heartedly after our Savior. Thanks for the great post!
Tony made such an impression on me that day. I recall feeling cleansed for the first time – that God would really forget my past and make me clean.
Such good thoughts … so amazing to think about God’s complete and total forgiveness. Also, wanted to thank you for visiting me at Pursuing Heart a few days ago. You asked which book was in my photo together with my Bible. It is actually my journal that you see. It looked like part of the page was printed (as in a book), but I do part of my journaling on my laptop, but then always must also print it out, and include in my journal, along with what I have already written directly into the journal. Journaling is so important to me (my way of recording thoughts and letting truths sink into my heart). Fun to meet other grandma’s through blogging!
Oh we are so much alike. I journal as well. My cupboard is full of my books. Not sure who will ever read them although occasionally I do go through them. This blogging is taking a lot of my time but I think it is very valuable – in finding others and reaching out as God wants us to do. Now I have to leave this computer and get to praying, and listening. lol:) Have a wonderful spirit-filled day.
Those words of Nixon’s were not erased. They live on, their sense imagined in the nation’s mind.
But they were erased so that they are no longer able to be heard. Imagined yes but no longer real.
All our pasts can be erased by God like that – they can of course be remembered but not with the pain that they used to have. With Christ there is freedom to clean the slate and start anew.
Christ is risen. Truly He is risen. Hallelujah.
This is a good one, Jan. Sometimes the past is like a boomerang, coming back to whack us in the head when we’re just getting on our feet again. I think the more we grow in God’s Word, and learn to embrace and stand on it, the better able we are to deflect those accusations.
And then there are those things of the past God is dealing with somehow inside of us–and until we let HIm accomplish His work they haunt us.
Seeking Him is the key to discovering whether what we’re experiencing is superficial, or a deeper work of God. In either case, He gives us the grace and strength we need to overcome.
Thanks. Everything you say is true and I can’t wait to actually meet you. I like the “key to discovering” – that’s good. If we are faithful and keep asking He will reveal the deeper parts of our souls and then He can help us discover those hidden hurts and help us to learn to be free to live in Him. And yes sometimes things we don’t even know are holding us down – He shows us – and what a difference.
Have a great day. Jan