I’ve felt very conflicted about something lately. I was involved in a youth group toward the end of junior high and on into high school and many of those people were really close then and still are now. I think that’s so incredible really. Most of my friends that went I never see, rarely talk with and to much of my knowledge are not following the Lord. I didn’t follow the Lord then and I’m sure they would be surprised to know that I’m in full-time ministry now. Anyway, some of them have decided they want to do a youth group reunion. It sounds like it will be similar to a class reunion. I didn’t go to my 10 year class reunion, for many reasons really.
But here’s the thing, when I think about that reunion my heart is automatically anxious. I actually really love and enjoy a lot of the people who would be there and would love to see them again. But then there’s the others who I felt unliked by, judged by and for good reason probably. But it strikes fear in my heart of what others think of me. I wish I didn’t fear the thoughts of others so much. But I do. It’s interesting really because I always felt like the youth pastor didn’t like me and then a year after I joined Campus Crusade for Christ staff I saw him and he said, “You know, it’s nothing short of a miracle that you are where you are today.” That pretty much affirmed what I knew he thought all those years. But I just have to say, Isn’t it a miracle that any of us know Christ?! We’re all saved by grace. That’s what makes God so great, He saves us when we are at our grossest. That’s right, He saved a wretch like me and I’ll be forever grateful.
So I’ve been pondering all these thoughts since I’ve heard about this reunion. I’m often so terrified of my past and the things I so wish that I could change that it has the ability to hinder my future. If that makes any sense. Today I read Jon Acuff’s blog post on a similar topic called The Past and LOVED it. I thought he had such great things to say about leaving the past the past and rejoicing in all God has done, is doing and has redeemed in my life. So thank you Jon for that great reminder. You should definitely read it!
I don’t know if we’ll be able to go to that reunion yet or not but if I do, I’ll walk in and praise God that I’m a new person today and the person many of them knew in the past has been gone a very long time. The past will hinder no more.
Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:18-19
P.s. I just have to say that that youth pastor had and is still having an incredible ministry. I don’t want to discredit that or paint him all bad because he’s not.