I don't think there is anything more damaging to our overall sense of well-being than for us to continually rehearse the 'bad stuff' in life. The 'stuff' may have happened TO us, or we may have been the ones to have DONE it. Regardless, to continually go over and over all that "old history" is really not all that productive and it might actually be the cause of why we aren't moving forward right now! There is something much more powerful in 'being present' in the moment - to be focused on what it is we can take control of within ourselves, then turning the rest over to God to let him have the reins in our lives.
To forget about what's happened one must be willing to let go of both 'hurts' done to us and those things that aren't doing us any good to hold onto, like all those hang-ups we continually make excuses to ourselves and others about instead of dealing with them. I know this is easier said than done, for I also have struggled with holding onto hang-ups God has asked me to put down. It may have been my stubbornness or simply my inability to trust things will ever 'get better' if I did put them down. To let go I had to yield where I had been unyielding, and go 'all in' where I had been lacking in trust. It isn't that I didn't know what to do - it is that I had to be willing to live in the present, allowing God to change my present, instead of me holding onto my past!
"Old history" - we all have it. We all deal with it differently. We all have those moments when we resort back to some old way of thinking - falling back on what happened instead of focusing on what is happening now. We miss what is happening now if we do! We close our eyes to God's presence in our lives - we only see the impossibilities - but where he is, there are infinite possibilities. Desert places aren't easily traversed, are they? Why? There are obstacles in the way. The dry places we experience there make the journey even harder. Isn't it good to know that God is in the business of clearing the way and providing for us to be refreshed along the way?
Be alert and be present. Actions are described there, my friends. Most of the problems we have with our 'old history' is that we have been unable to take some action we have been asked to take at some point along the way. We were supposed to seek forgiveness from one we wronged, but we didn't. We were asked to lay something down, but we stubbornly held on. We were called to go above and beyond, but we simply stood still and let life happen around us. Be alert - pay attention, get focused, and be prepared for action. Be present - take notice, and be real. Being present means we are willing to be 'genuine' about ourselves - admitting where we have failed, owning our next steps, and then taking the action required.
The more we focus on the 'old history' portion of our lives, the more we get mired down by that history. The moment we come into the present, we open ourselves to being transparent, real, and truthful with ourselves, God, and others. This is the starting place for moving out of the 'old history' portion of our lives and into the 'new places' God is about to bring us into by his grace. Just sayin!