The Words of the Past

At some point over a year ago (during the spring of 2012) I wrote a letter to myself in my sketchbook.  The words are honest, straight forward and, at times, harsh to read because they are the truth.  I found it again while I was “retiring” my sketchbook and starting a new one.  I want to share it because the words spoken are a lesson to all of us with haunted pasts.

It goes as follows:

A letter to myself…

You may not get this in time, but I wanted to give you some advice on life, faith and love.  We look back and will always ask ourselves if we could have done things differently. I find myself in the same situation.  And I hope you eventually learn after experiencing al this for yourself.

You are strong because you know that your strength comes from God, but at the same time you doubt what God can do.  You need to learn to let go and step out in faith.  You want to be the barbarian, the warrior and the lover, but you are too afraid to open up your heart to love enough to be able to fight for something.  Anything.  You carry around your scars like a burden, but you’ve never learned from them.

Yes, you have hurt people in the past, but that shouldn’t keep you from loving to the fullest those that are in your life now.  By shielding yourself, you are pushing others away, hurting them more than you realize.  The root of the problem comes back to you, nobody else is to blame.  I know this may sound difficult, but you cannot continue living this way.

You don’t trust yourself.  There are things in your past that still haunt you.  Things you never did, even though they seemed so easy at the time.  Things that you never got the chance to say.  People whom you were never able to forgive, so you never forgave yourself for things that never happened.  You stood on the edge of darkness, looking in, but you never leapt.  You realized what was important in life, but you made that darkness, that evil part of who you were, who you are.

You died the day that you became a child of God, reborn into his Kingdom.  So why are you still carting things that don’t matter around with you?  You couldn’t do anything more than what you did.  You loved to the fullest.  That is the past.  God is leading you forwards, if you don’t keep your eyes ahead you will stumble again and misplace your feet.

You fear the things that God opened your eyes to in Africa.  You will always hear her cries.  Embrace them and let that carry you to change the world.  You can’t let it hold you back.  In Joplin, you flinched, but found yourself exactly where you were needed.  The images will never go away, but you must understand that there is nothing more you can do.  You cannot dwell on the past.

Give yourself some time to heal.  Step back and regroup.  And then trust that God knows what he is doing.  This isn’t the end, but just a moment in the journey.

God Bless and PEACE

I share this because I feel that we all need to learn to let go and continue moving forwards.  The past may have made you who you are, but it shouldn’t define who you will be as we move forwards in this journey of life.

In this new sketchbook, bright and clean, I have written another letter to myself.  Maybe in time I will look back and remember the words of wisdom that I once wrote…

God Bless and PEACE


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