“Reminisce”

Reminisce: Embrace the PAST without getting STUCK in it.
 
Its hard to say good-bye to the past. For some, we want to rid ourselves of the painful memories that continue to haunt us, but the past won’t let us go. For others, our longing for the way things were lock us into the past and keeps us from moving forward. Either way, we feel stuck! The Good News is that Jesus is doing a new thing…and frees us to move forward into a better tomorrow.
 
You can wreck your life by neglecting the past and you can neglect your life by excessive living in the past.
– regret –> repent
– resent –> rejoice
– relive –> release
 
remember where you’ve been
realize where you are
rehearse where you are going
Don’t let the fear what did happen or what could happen make nothing happen!
 
Further Conversation
1. Share a memory of an event that shaped who you are today. How often do you reminisce (or re-remember) this time in your life?
2. Read Luke 5:37-39 Jesus challenged many religious traditions. Why do you think people might say “The old is just fine”?
3. Read 1 Corinthians 7:10 How can regret keep us stuck in the past? How has repentance freed you from a regret of the past?
4. Genesis 19:26 I don’t have to love what happened to rejoice that God can use it. How does bitterness or resentment keep us stuck in the past? When has rejoicing in the LORD freed you?
5. Read Lamentations 3:22-23 God mercies don’t come with a roll-over plan. How have you experienced God’s mercies recently?
6. Remember > Realize > Rehearse. I can’t go back to Eden but I can enter the city of God. What does God want for us? What’s your role and responsibility in what God wants for all of us?
7. What fear holds you back? How can we help you take a next step?
 
Daily Devotions: Go Deeper this Week
 
Monday – Mark 14:32-36
I don’t want to _______. How many times in my life have I said those words? Sometimes its childish: I don’t want to wake up early. I don’t want to eat my vegetables. Other times selfish: I don’t want to serve. I don’t want to give. I don’t want to share. Yet other times, painful: I don’t want to bury my mom. There are millions of things in this life we don’t want to do. It brings me great comfort to know I’m not alone. Even Jesus struggled, basically praying, “God, I don’t want to.” The challenge of surrender is admitting the “I don’t want to” but choosing to move forward in obedience anyway. Control says “no.” Surrender says “I don’t want to…but for you, LORD, I will.” Where are you being challenged to surrender today?
Pray: Almighty God, there are many things I don’t want to do, but today for you I will obey. I will live my life surrendered in faith to you.
 
Tuesday – John 15:1-7
I’m frustrated. The cord on our new vacuum is short. Maybe I was spoiled by an extra long cord on our old one. I feel like I have to hop outlets all the time. No surprise, my vacuum doesn’t work unplugged. Sure, I can push it around. It might even leave some nice lines in the carpet. But the carpet won’t be clean unless the vacuum is plugged in and running. The vacuum only bears the fruit of cleaning when its plugged in. You and I are much the same way. Only connected to Christ, through surrender, can we truly live. Many walk through life leaving carpet lines but never really running. In Christ, we run, we live, we grow, and we bear fruit. Are you living a life truly connected to Christ? What is your evidence, your fruit?
Pray: LORD Jesus, I must stay connected through surrender to you. Help me stay plugged in, growing and bearing fruit of real life.
 
Wednesday – John 4:4-14
The human body can only live a few days without water. We must drink and then drink again and again. Today, we only need to turn on a faucet. But the irony is that for as readily available water is in America, our deeper thirst is never quenched. Jesus speaks to the woman about a thirst water can’t quench. We try to drink in stuff, relationships, power, prestige, conquest, and control. These only leave us thirsting for more. Only Jesus can quench the thirst of our hearts. What do you want more of? Only Jesus truly satisfies.
Pray: Creator God, I am made to only be satisfied by you. I confess I drink in things and people an power. Today, I will only seek you. 
 
Thursday – Psalm 56:1-4
“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me.” Not long ago we lived by this motto. Today, we recognize the power of words. Words, names, slander all hurt. Are we soft today? Maybe. Were we ignoring or denying damage in the past. Probably. People hurt people. Since Cain and Abel, people have hurt and killed each other. This Psalmist laments the pain and lies thrown his way. Yet, he turns to the LORD. Surrender not only affects our actions, but the way we choose to see ourselves and others. If we are trying to control our self-image, slander matters. If we have surrendered our image of ourselves to God, then only God’s opinion matters. Who are you choosing to listen to about who you are?
Pray: Heavenly Father, I listen to the wrong voices so often. Tune my ears to your WORD and your promises. Help me hear only you.
 
Friday – Psalm 37:1-6
What does it take to survive and thrive in this world today? We watch celebrities and politicians, business leaders and athletes cheat and betray others to get to the top. And it sure seems to work for them. They have their mansions while we struggle to pay for necessary prescriptions and basic healthcare. They live in luxury while we only look on longingly. Yet this Psalm reminds us that all these things will pass away. How many on top so quickly fall? Only in obedience, surrender, and trust in the LORD will we ever find real joy and contentment. “Commit yourselves to the LORD.” What are you committed to today? Do you look longingly or choose to trust?
Pray: Holy Spirit, I confess I look around and long for so much. Please mold my heart and help me commit myself to the LORD. 
 
Saturday – 1 Peter 5:6-7
When will it be my turn? Its so hard to wait. Everyone wants to be the line-leader in preschool. We want to go first, get the best, and have our day in the sun. Yet Peter reminds us to wait on the LORD. Surrender requires allowing God to own the time and the line. We want to control our place and protect our position. But humility relinquishes our rights to the LORD and allows God to lift us up at the right time, in HIS way. Its so hard to wait. Yet, if we will spend time in God’s word, learning and trusting his promises, we will always find the wait is worth it. Are you seeking control, riding the cycle of fear? Or surrender to the LORD today, and wait on God?
Pray: LORD of Heaven and Earth, thank you that you alone are trustworthy and will elevate me in your time…if only I will trust you.