Don’t let mistakes from the past keep you down

Published 9:30 pm Saturday, March 26, 2016

By LARRY STOVER |  Praise Park Ministries Church of the Nazarene

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could undo our mistakes from the past? I know a lot of people who would have worked a lot harder to develop better relationships. After people have wrecked their lives with addictions, it is obvious that most, if not all, wished that they had never started taking drugs or drinking alcohol.

For others, life has been blanketed with bad choices, poor decisions, painful mistakes and the consequences of telling lies or becoming a thief. The saddest observation that I make is seeing people who have become a prisoner of the past. They appear to be almost trapped by a lifestyle that offers little hope. With life spiraling out of control, they continue to make bad choices that foster regret and hopelessness.

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Two individuals, Peter and Judas, of the original Easter season paint a realistic picture of how people today handle the bad decisions of life.

Judas sold out Jesus for 30 pieces of silver and regretted it. He tried to undo the situation with the Pharisees by offering to return the money. With remorse and guilt cluttering his mind, suicide was the only solution he could figure out to solve his dilemma.

Simon Peter denied Jesus three times. When the rooster crowed, the Bible says he went out and wept bitterly. I can only imagine how he was overwhelmed by the look on the face of Jesus when he realized what he had done. The difference between Judas and Peter was the fact that Peter repented of what he had done and asked Jesus to forgive him.

We find ourselves between a rock and a hard place by the poor decision we make. Dallas County Jail is occupied by individuals who have made bad choices and live a negative lifestyle. The drug court of our county is made up of a cross section of our communities with people battling a variety of addictions. Homes are disintegrating; relationships are breaking apart; and, society is vacillating as to how to fix our ailing society.

The message of Easter excites me today.

We can either be like Judas and allow life to drive us to despair, or be like Peter who allowed his sorrow to drive him to Jesus.

We have all made mistakes, some more life changing than others. The message of Easter is the hope that we have in Jesus Christ.

Whether you are dealing with pain, regret, guilt, frustration, or sin of any kind, Jesus is only a prayer away offering forgiveness, restoration and hope. Jesus still has a plan for your life in spite of all the mistakes you have made. Your life still has purpose.

Don’t allow Satan to drag you into a state of hopelessness, when you have been forgiven and restored by Jesus, you will discover that life is “Simply Beautiful.”