The favorite beginning of MANY a fairy tale---a story from the past---an oldie but a goodie----memories---a song writer's delight--yesterday-
"But that was yesterday and yesterday's gone"
If you live in the present, then what do you do with the past? Does it become like an old shoe, cast aside and thrown to the back of the memory closet? Or do you refuse to cast the worn and faded aside and continue to plod around in that which begs to be left behind?
The past is gone, but it also is an important component of how you live today. Hopefully lessons learned and wisdom gained are benchmarks for a better future, if you are willing to leave the past where it belongs-in the past.
We have all known someone who seems to be stuck in a better time. "Glory Days" when life was filled with success. We all run from those "Back in 19__" stories. Those stories so often repeated, you could tell the tale for them. "Why when I _________, we_______" fill in the blank. The rose colored glasses of the past might bear closer examination. It becomes one of those mirrors which distort the image when peering backwards. In the mind's eye, the truth becomes blurry with the fantasy of the better day.
There are memories --which we leave behind---and never allow to bubble to the surface again. Many of my peers who served in Vietnam, never speak of those days. My daddy never talked about the horrors of World War II in France. Painful and tragic days are stuffed back in the memory archives with refusal to ever talk about the pain still bubbling on the back burner of our heart. Do not let it out of the box for fear of reliving the horror we beg to forget.
So what do we do with the past? I read a passage in a book recently, "The past has no bearing on the present." NO--I disagree--for fiction purposes perhaps--but the past shapes who we are today. Like the closet filled with family portraits--it is a part of history. Accept memories for what they are--some to be cherished and others to be left behind--but all a part of our past which marks how we live the present.
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,