While cleaning our hall bathroom this week, I saw a little sliver of purple paint peeping out at me from behind a loose towel holder. I painted that bathroom purple at least 15 years ago when my sons were toddlers. It’s been a tan color for years now, and yet here peeping out at me was a splash of purple. It had been covered, but it is still a part of the history of that bathroom. The sight of that purple brought back sweet memories of babies splashing in the tub; it also reminded me of the need to fix that towel holder!
Events of our lives are never gone. They happened. The good things. The bad things: and everything in between. That’s a reality of mortal life. But what happens when that sliver of a memory slips out from behind the years of life into the forefront of your thoughts; when you realize that behind the grocery cart in front of you is the person who hurt you so deeply all those years ago?
“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] John 16:33 AMPC
In that moment, do you sense the peace and confidence that comes from knowing that Jesus bore your pain - of every kind? That because of the intensity of His love for you He overcame the world and deprived it of its power to harm you? That you are truly the treasured apple of His eye that He redeemed with the Blood of His only Son? Or does the “purple” of your past flood out and transport you back to the darkness of the place you were in so long ago, just with a memory?
There’s no right or wrong answer in that moment. Just know that if all that pain rushes out and engulfs you, that there is just a dimension of your salvation that you have not yet experienced in its fullness. It’s there. It’s yours. Your walls are not purple. Purple was a part of your historical past, but you have been washed by the Blood of Jesus, He has clothed you with His very own righteousness, and has deprived that past of its power to harm you in the freedom of today. Jesus doesn’t just want you to keep your pain out of mind, He wants you to live free from any power it ever held over you.
If you need to forgive, then forgive. Release that person from that penalty that you feel they deserve. Let it go. You can never experience the freedom that Christ has for you if you’re filled with thoughts of judgement and vengeance. Forgiveness is very simply a decision, not an emotion. Emotions may continue to rise, and when they do, just remind yourself that you chose to forgive them, that Jesus deprived them and that situation of any power to harm you. He conquered it completely for you, and now you’re free to live in peace and in confidence knowing that once and for all, Jesus overcame anything you would ever face, in your past, in your present, and in your future.
- Melody Davis