"[T]he past is the past and that is what time means, and time itself is one more name for death, and Heaven itself is a state where 'the former things have passed away.'" C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed.
As Christians, we have are called to leave the past behind. It is hard, believe me. Some of us are tied to the past by regret. Some of us are tied to the past by grief. Still others are tied by the past because of bitterness. Some of us need to forgive ourselves. Too often our lives stop because we are too busy looking behind us, and as C.S. Lewis says, that is another name for death.
The good news, literally, is that we are called to focus on the future and not the past. We do not have to remember our failures because God is forming us anew. We are able to forgive for two reasons: (a) He has forgiven us much, and (b) He will exact revenge His children. It is not always easy, but we can let go of the bitterness because we can have confidence that whatever the hurt was, God will use it for His glory and our benefit. We can forgive ourselves because God does not even remember our sins. Can you imagine? He does not even remember when I mess up? As long as we have given our life to Christ, we put the past behind us because He is creating for us a new life, both now and after we die.
The Christian is called to look into the future, to hold on to the promises of a new name for those of us who have a name like mud right now; a new character for those of who struggle with a character flaw; a new life as we give our lives to Christ. This is not only in the future after we die. It is available to us right now here on earth, as long as we trust Him and His Word. If we choose to focus on the Author and Perfecter of our faith, He will make this current life a foretaste of Heaven.
No matter where you are in life, whatever your past is, God has something great planned for you, if you will just entrust your future to Him.
What do you need to leave behind?