It was a medium sized box that was taped shut. It had never been opened. It had not one, not two, but three moving company labels on it. So, that box was first packed three moves earlier, over 15 years ago. I picked it up, wasn't very heavy. Gave it a shake, didn't rattle. I had no idea what was in it.
There it was, in my hands, taunting me. What was inside? How important could it be? Why hadn't it been opened? Should I open it now? I decided not to, and put it back on the shelf where it came from. Sometimes it's just easier leaving things unopened and hidden in the past. “Out of sight out of mind” as they say.
But when in comes to the disgrace or shame of our past, “out of sight out of mind” doesn't always work. Some things we seek to keep unopened in our lives... things like past hurts, past doubts, past disappointments, past loss, past guilt and sin... these things tend find their way out the box in defining moments and controlling ways.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish...” (John 3:16, NIV). Shall not perish... under the weight of past shame and guilt. Shall not perish... in the pain of past hurts. Shall not perish... in the grip of past temptations or additions. Whoever believes in Jesus Christ shall not perish, but have what? Eternal Life! In the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, God rolls away the disgrace of our past forever into our future! Click here to listen to more (March 7 sermon).
My prayer for you is that you can let go of the disgrace of your past and open the box of God's grace and mercy found in Jesus Christ!
Your partner on the journey,