Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14
Paul’s sinful past was not removed from his memory; it will always be a part of him. But he doesn’t sit and dwell on it, remembering who he used to be every day, all day long. Paul learned to put the past behind him where it belongs and to look forward, to wherever Jesus leads him. Paul dug in his heels and set his heart on serving God. Paul chose to not let his past be a stumbling block for him. We should each choose to be that way.
Each of us has things in the past that we may not be proud of. But you asked the Lord to forgive your sins and to set you free from them. And He did – the blood of the Lord Jesus has washed you clean.
Now it’s your choice to continue each day to say I can’t serve God because I am a worthless sinner, or to say I am a child of God, I have received the mercy of the Lord and by His divine grace I choose to serve Him and reflect His love to all, in every place I walk.
It’s a mind/heart set. Paul looked forward to his ultimate reward and set his mind to helping all people see that awesome gift also. But it is a choice you must make on your own. No one can make the choice for you, but the Lord will encourage you and reward you when you do a good job.
Are you going to make mistakes? OH YES, you most definitely are. Fortunately, God will forgive those mistakes and He will help you learn from them so that you can grow closer to Him. But it’s not really a question of whether you will make mistakes or have minor set backs, it’s a question of serving your past or looking forward to your future.
God never said it would be easy, but He did say He would be there to help you and guide you.