I hope this doesn’t shock you, but I have a past. I did not always walk with Jesus, and it showed. I was self-centered and lived for the unholy trinity of me, myself, and I. Paul lists some of the “acts of the sinful nature” in several of his letters, and I exhibited more than a few of them. I’m not saying that with pride, but rather to show you the contrast between who I was and who God is shaping me to be.
To borrow from King David, when God saved me . . .
He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. (Psalm 40:2)
How foolish would I be to cling to the pit?
Yet I see and hear so many of God’s redeemed people referring to themselves by their past. Why? That’s not who you are anymore. I love how Paul declared, “You were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live . . . But God . . . .” God rescued you out of his great love and rich mercy and made you “alive with Christ” through whom you have been saved (Eph 2:1-5 – emphasis added). Do you see it? You were steeped in sin, but now you are filled with Christ. You were lost, but now you are found. You were condemned, but now you are set free. You were God’s enemy, now you are His child. You are “a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Cor 5:17).
If God has lifted you out of the pit of sin and set your feet on the solid Rock, why do you keep looking back into the mud and mire? No matter what you’ve done in the past, if you are in Christ, your identity is no longer there. You are made new – holy and righteous. Beloved, you are not that sinful person anymore. Stand tall on that rock and sing a song of praise to the Lord.