Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Snap (09/04/08)
TITLE: Snap Out the Unhappy Memories
By Edmond Ng
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Memories of unpleasant past tend to linger on in our minds long after the event has taken place, and if we fail to snap out such bitter memories, they can affect how we live our daily lives. Whether it be the lost of someone we love, the prolong caring for someone disabled, a broken trust, or a failed relationship, all these memories of painful times can haunt us if we do not handle them properly.
Let us take a few moments to examine ourselves. When we reflect upon our past, do we harbor bitterness or unhappiness within us? Do we still question God as to why it had happened? If the answer is yes, then it means we need help, because harboring unhappiness in our minds and hearts is not good, and the way we handle unhappy memories will determine how our lives become in the future, of joy or sorrow, of victory or defeat.
A good example of how we should handle unhappy memories is to follow Joseph, the son of Jacob. Instead of blaming God for all the unhappy things that happened in his life, Joseph chose to see circumstances as God's way of leading him to the right path in fulfilling God's plan for his life. This may be seen from the way Joseph revealed himself to his brothers while in Egypt.
- "Now do not be grieved or angry with yourselves, because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life. (Genesis 45:5 NAS)
If we, like Joseph, can see our lives the way he sees his, we will be able to understand that circumstances in life are one of God's ways in molding His chosen people for His purpose. Understanding this, is the first step to realizing God’s guiding hands on our lives, and this should help us learn to let go memories of our painful past, to let it be just memories, without the pain. We will not question God as to why certain things happen the way it happened, but we will be assured that whatever had happened or will happen is part of God's plan for our lives. Once we understand this and follow how Joseph handles unpleasant memories in his life, we will then be able to put in perspective how we should view our unhappy past, and move forward to live our lives abundantly, according to the will of God.
In seeing God as playing a part in the circumstances of our lives, we should therefore, like Joseph, view events in our lives as God's way of teaching and molding us for His work, in leading us to the paths He wants us to go, to fulfill His purpose for our lives. Knowing this should help us view circumstances from the correct perspective and begin the process of healing within our hearts and minds in snapping out bitterness from our memories.
Forgive us, O Lord, for harboring bitter memories of our past and for continuing to question You as to why unhappy events happened in our lives. Teach us Lord to see those events as part of our training for your service, and direct us in the right path to fulfill Your will for our lives, to learn to be like Joseph, to see circumstances as a way of Your leading, and snap out all bitterness from the memories of our unpleasant past.
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