I think Autumn is the best time of year with falling leaves, football games, pumpkins, sweaters and cooler weather. The thing I cherish most about fall is the beloved pumpkin spice latte. Can I get a witness?
I recently heard a story of a lady who…wait for it…HATES pumpkin spice lattes. (I know it’s hard to image.) She shared the reason for her aversion and it painted a bigger picture for me. When she was a little girl her dad made pumpkin spice bread for the family. Instead of adding baking powder he used baking soda! The bread smelled heavenly, but it tasted too salty and rancid. Today whenever she thinks of trying anything with pumpkin spice her mind runs to that first bad experience. Her brain classifies and judges ALL pumpkin spice items as distasteful. She needs a memory redemption. I wish I could invite her to the coffee shop.
How many of us do the same thing? If we’ve experienced a painful incident we judge everything associated with that event as painful, and label it as dangerous. This is the precursor of prejudice–judging all by the actions of a few.
I got hurt in church, thus all churches are hurtful. I was abused by a man; all men are abusive. I was robbed by a teenager; all teens are criminals. My boss was unfair; all bosses are out to get me.
You get the idea. You’ve just discovered the devil’s major scheme to STEAL our future. He tries to trick us into judging one negative incident as life’s forgone conclusion. That negative memory does not have to be your fate! It can be REDEEMED and exchanged for God’s greater purpose.
We can’t change the FACTS of what happened to us, but we CAN change our response and embrace the TRUTH of God’s redeeming power!
Memories are powerful and real. They can be triggered by smell, sound or a feeling. How many painful memories occupy real estate of your head?
Maybe someone lied about you 20 years ago. You never see them anymore, but because you HOLD ON TO THE NEGATIVE MEMORY it’s like they are still a part of your life.
As the years go by, our minds get packed with all the people who’ve hurt us and it drains all our energy “entertaining” these memories. It’s like a broken record playing over and over in our heads…conversations, accusations, misunderstandings…replayed over and over.
Every time we rehearse the memory of the hurt, we are reinforcing the strength of its hold on us. God did not create you to be tormented by your memories. The cross paid the price to redeem our souls (mind, will and emotions) from all the enemies’ lies.
But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave: for he shall receive me. Selah. Psalm 49:15 (underline added) KJV
Redeem: (Hebrew=padah) / to loose (by cutting or severing) / to pay a price for / to let go / to set free – Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon
We can’t change what’s happened to us, but we can let the Lord redeem those memories and strip their power to haunt us. Pain and unforgiveness tie us to the memory. As we make the decision to LET IT GO and forgive, Jesus severs the tie to the painful memory. Forgiveness isn’t a feeling, but a choice to be free.
When we have toxic seeds of unforgiveness we are actually chained to that event or circumstance. When we forgive we break the chain to that person and situation in our mind. – Dr. Caroline Leaf (Listen to Dr. Leaf discuss toxic unforgiveness.)
Paul instructed us to pray that the EYES OF OUR UNDERSTANDING would be enlightened to know our calling, inheritance, and the exceeding power for those who believe. For every painful experience or memory distorting the FLAVOR of our life (just like the bad pumpkin spice bread), there is REDEEMING POWER to set us free!
- Are there memories that haunt you playing over and over in your thoughts?
- Is there anyone that you need to forgive to LET IT GO and stop replaying the painful event? Stop right now and make a decision to forgive.
- Are there things you have judged because you had a negative first experience? Invite Jesus into that memory and let Him speak truth to the lies that are cloudy your future.
- What incidents need to stop occupying real estate in your head? Let it go and let’s move on.
Day 14. “The God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come.22 And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all. Ephesians 1:17-22
Lord, I pray you would enlighten my understanding beyond the painful memories in my mind. I receive your calling, your inheritance and your exceeding great power. I believe in your redeeming power to cut me loose from the past and sever every evil, painful memory from my mind. I pray the blood of Jesus would cover that memory. I know longer see it the same; I see it RED–covered in your blood. You paid the price for my freedom. Lord, help me to forgive ______________ for how they hurt me. I release them and let go of the tapes that have replayed over and over in my mind. Thank you Lord for hitting the STOP button. I’m free from the torment of hearing these painful events repeated in my mind. Thank you for setting me free!
The redeeming power of Jesus heals our negative memories.