“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?” (Isaiah 43:18 NIV).
Something new happened last night at 6:02-a precious gift of God took her first breath. Her name is Kinsley. She is my great-granddaughter, and she is beautiful. Her little life is fresh and without any of life's baggage to carry with her. Nothing in her past because she has no past in this world. Nothing to weigh her little heart down. Her life is a clean slate upon which each day's experience will impart its message. With parents and family to love and nurture, she has the hope that the message will be one of great promise.
Many do not realize that they also have the hope of a new slate–a new beginning. To truly forget the former things, and not dwell on the past, we can't just "believe in" Jesus Christ, we must "believe Him". To be free from worries that control our lives, we must believe He is who He says He is. We must believe that He will do what He says. We must believe that we can forget the former things, and they will not control our lives. I am free in Him. You are free in Him, but we must “believe Him”―not just “believe in” Him.
When you first know Jesus Christ as your Savior, you believe in Him. To believe Him and what He promises, you grow in His Word and in His grace. If you are not growing in your Christian life through prayer, bible study and worship, you will not be able to believe Him. If you are daily growing in Him, you have the power to choose to believe Him. Forgetting the former things that have controlled your life is a choice. You choose to believe Him, and you receive His strength for your weakness. You choose to trust in what He says in His Word, and He honors that choice with faith.
Just as He gives us the freedom to accept or reject Him as Savior, He gives us the freedom to choose to believe Him or not. He doesn't make us believe Him, but it is His greatest desire for us to grow in His truth and to believe Him. If we believe in Him as Savior and are seeking Him each day, we have the power to believe Him as Lord. If I submit all that I struggle with to Him, He will become Lord of it. I don't have to try to control or decide anything. If you and I will choose to believe Him, and let Him take care of what tortures our minds, we will discover that the former things can be forgotten.
When we believe what He says in His Word is true, newness springs up; the old is no more, and we can perceive His truth instead of the lies of our past or circumstance of which the enemy is so quick to remind us. Believing Him brings the greatest promise! It is a promise that no matter what we face He is our strength, and He brings life-giving streams of hope and promise to the barren deserts of our lives. Choose what He promises! “I am making a way in the wilderness,” He proclaims, “and streams in the wasteland. I provide water in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland, to give drink to my people, my chosen, the people I formed for myself that they may proclaim my praise” (Isaiah 43:19b, 20b, 21, NIV).
New life and new beginnings. No more baggage to weigh down your heart. With new life in Him, you, also can have a clean slate ready for hope and promise.