For our first reading today, we begin 1 Timothy. St. Paul talks about his past. More on that in a moment. We’re back in the Sermon on the Plain for our Gospel reading. Today we hear Jesus talking about removing the wooden beam from our own eye before we go pointing out the splinter in our brother’s eye.
Before he became Paul, he was Saul. He was a devout Jew, and a persecutor of Christians. When it came to these people following the Way, Saul was not a nice man. Maybe that’s what makes his witness so great. He was not afraid to talk about his past. And here’s the best part: he didn’t feel it necessary to dwell on the past. To Paul, the past was over. He would much rather dwell on God’s mercy and compassion and forgiveness. He realized that God had actually used his past to prepare him for his future.
So, how are you doing on that front? Have you reconciled with your past? Better yet, have you reconciled with God about your past? You know, there is that whole sacrament of reconciliation thing. Once you receive God’s forgiveness, your past is gone. Now, that’s not to say that we can’t continually learn from it. But there is absolutely no reason to dwell on it. You see, God has a PLAN for your life. And you can’t plan the past. But you can say yes to His plan for your future.
Father, forgive us for those times when we dwell on the past. Help us to learn from it and let it go. Give us the grace to look towards the future, and to help fulfill Your plan for our lives. Amen.