I admit — I am a bit of a brain geek. A keen interest in the brain and how it functions drives me to read books on the brain. The really great news is that the brain has an elastic property about it that enables it to heal and change with the proper treatment, supplements and medication. There is no such thing as a “normal” brain – thank you to the Fall (recorded in Genesis 3) – so no one is normal. We are all a little off our rockers. That levels the playing field, doesn’t it?!
As I finished reading This is Your Brain on Joy by Dr.Earl Henslin – a book I recommend everyone picks up to read – this quote caught my eye.
Seeing yourself as a victim means your identity comes from the belief that the past is more powerful than the present. It is the belief that your failures of yesterday are more real than the reality of today. It is the false belief that other people from long ago are responsible for who you are now, either your emotional pain or your inability to grow.This is Your Brain on Joy, Dr. Earl Henslin, p. 205
Bullies come in all sizes and shapes. This one happens to be named Your Past and it can be loud, obnoxious and intimidating. So how does one face the bully of the past and get beyond it? How does one live in the present today not the failures of yesterday? How does one take responsibility for who she is today?
There are many excellent portrayals of ordinary people overcoming bullies in movies past and present. It might be worth the time to check out this website that cites eight movies inspiring individuals to be better.
Or you can follow Paul’s excellent advice in Philippians 3.
12I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. 13No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.Philippians 3:12-14
As children of God, we can also rest assured that our past is thrown into the sea of forgetfulness as a benefit of atonement by Jesus’ blood. In common words, when we said yes to Jesus, our debts were paid in full. They were put in the “PAID” file.
13You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. 14He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross.Colossians 2:13-14
12He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.Psalm 103:12
Your Past might be the bully you face on a regular basis, but he is only a loud noise. He can be silenced, unable to bother you anymore. Begin here with these words of truth. It may be helpful and necessary to reach out to a trusted friend, counselor or spiritual advisor for additional help, but there is hope!