You are a product of your past, and you cannot change your past! That truth can either excite you or discourage you. Depending on situations that you've gone through, the things have happened in your past have pushed you along in different goals in your life, or they have held you back. In my life, I can see that some decisions have prevented me from accomplishing different goals. But at the same time there were decisions that were made that vaulted me into new realms in my relationship with Jesus, in the careers that I have had, and in my relationships with others.
The problem is that those past experiences shape how we view ourselves and how others view us. Just like when we're in high school, we can have labels attached to us based on what other people know about us. Maybe we used to sleep around, or get drunk on the weekends, or we were just a jerk to people. So we have a hard time making relationships with people because there is a bad stigma of us. On the other hand, our popularity and career success can give us some labels that we don't necessarily want or deserve. Perhaps people look at us with a certain eye based on the size of house we have, or the way our kids dress, or even things they may have read in the newspaper or on social media. Everything we have experienced in our life has made us who we are today.
But even though you cannot change your past, the joy is that you can change your future! Every day you are able to change how you are known for the better. Regardless of what has happened to you in your past, you are able to define who you will become. Lived a life of sin? You can be known for living a 180 degree holy life! Been known as a gossip and negative Nancy? You can begin to change into a positively cheerful person! All you have to do is decide to make that decision for yourself today and pray for God's grace and forgiveness as you pursue a righteous life.
Scripture tells us that in Christ, we are made a new creation (2 Cor. 5.17) And that can be every day. To be honest yesterday I was cranky, tired, and just wanted to be kept alone. Can you imagine if I was like that every day? But today, because of Christ renewing my mind and my body, I am more alert and full of joy.
The way that people view you can change. If you are persistent and focused, you can change they way that you are known. It may take time, and some people may never change their view of you, but you can change the name that you are known by. Paul was known as a "Christian murderer" and is now known as a great pastor and apostle. Peter was a simple fisherman, and now he's known at a "fisher of men". Mary Magdalene was known as a crazy, demon possessed woman who later is known as being someone who was extremely close with Jesus. The Bible is filled with many examples of people who were one way and now known by a different way.
Just like them, you can reinvent who you are in Christ! Every day take time to focus on who you want to be in Christ. Maybe you want to be more positive, more outgoing of a person, or to be a better friend. Possibly you want to be known as someone who is extremely close with Jesus, then you should work on spending more time with Him. Maybe it's to be a more involved dad or a more caring mother. Each other these things are noble and can change not only your life, but someone else's. You see, when we focus on reinventing ourselves into who Christ wants us to be, it not only changes our life, but also the people around us. So take time today to think of who you want to be and begin the quest of reinventing yourself.