Out With The Old...
Is Your Past Doing Anything For Where You Are Today?
Recently, I was asked by a friend to help with ideas for an article that she had to write titled "10 ways to ruin a relationship". Obviously, who wants to be a PRO on knowing exactly how to ruin one? Nobody. But, I felt like one. I can admit, I haven't always been blameless and had fallen short of doing my best that I could in a relationship. Still, I pay close attention to not only my own characteristics but also the individual who I may have been dating at the moment. So, I was able to provide my thoughts on the topic.
Apart from that, another relationship topic came up and this time it was at work, again. A colleague was requested by his church to pray about relationships. Currently his brother is going through a rough time with his wife and is temporarily staying at a friend's house. I guess you can say he took sleeping on the couch to a new level. However, there was something that he mentioned to me that really stuck with me and this could work both ways; depending if you're a pessimist or optimist. He stated that some people hold onto their past when they're in a relationship. In this case, they hold onto their past as a couple, not regarding their previous relations. When you begin dating someone, you have this guard up, you're not your complete self and you just want to impress the other person. You work for that person. You do whatever it takes until you get that person under your realm and often times you then lack the qualities that you've once had after having them for so long. It happens, but it usually strays into the past.
He then said, "Is your past doing anything for where you are today?"
All too often, people have a tendency to hold onto a relationship that no longer has the ability to be lit. For instance, consider a candle. The wick is lit so much and you're able to go on with lighting that candle for days, weeks, even months. Depending on how long you persist in trying to ignite that fire. Eventually, there is no more wax left in the candle and it burns out instantly. The candle wick becomes non-existent and you find yourself trying to light something that is no longer there. In the past, that candle, your relationship, made you feel like flowers blooming in the summer time. It gave you the feeling of freshness. It made you eager. It brought you peace. I hope you're catching onto the fact that I am using a candle as a reference, but I am still talking about relationships here, okay? When our candles burn out, we don't cry about it and wonder whether it will magically appear anymore. We grasp that it is now out of our control and that's the end of it.
Here's where you can be that pessimistic or optimistic person. Why did you have that candle? Were you only using it temporarily? Let's go back to relationships. What, in the past, made you want that relationship? What drew you to that person? Where did you leave that emotion? Sometimes, as stated before, we stay in a relationship that has run its course. On the other hand, we find ourselves no longer trying to make things work. We forget about the past. So, again I ask, is your past doing anything for where you are today? Have you gotten so comfortable that you forgot why you are where you are at now with that current person?
If you're in a relationship, I recommend that you ask yourself that question often along with these questions that I came up with:
First, have you prayed about it? Sometimes it can be about forgiving yourself or forgiving each other for being absent in the relationship.
[ Forgive each other as Christ has forgiven you. –Colossians 3:13 ]
Are you really doing all that you can to keep the relationship alive?
Have you tried something new and out of the ordinary?
[ There is hope in the darkness for all things will be made new- Revelations 21:5]
Do you find yourself settling because of laziness or lacking belief that you can do better?
What triggered different feelings?
Are you holding onto your past ? Has things changed after the "honeymoon stage" and as much as you've tried, it can no longer go back?
If your past is doing nothing for where you are today, sometimes you have to say Out With The Old, In With The New. Life is meant to be a constant rotation of change. If at first you don't succeed, well…you know the rest. And if that doesn't work, remember that we all grow apart, it's a part of life. We all have seasons and God knows the reasons. Being that I try to be optimistic, I say: Try, Try again, if of course you see that it's worth it.