Now it looks a bit better!
The past always looks better than it was. It's only pleasant because it isn't here. (Finley Peter Dunne)
When does a person know they are finally done with their past? That might just be one of the toughest questions for us to answer because our past doesn't always have a way of staying in the past, does it? There will be times when the memory is flooded with something we have said, done, or experienced and there is just no stopping it coming forward. Truth be told, our past is a mish-mosh of both good and bad - it is fine if the memories that flood in are the good ones, but when they are the bad ones, we don't actually enjoy those memories.
God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin. (I John 1:5-7)
As I have matured, I realize the way I experienced and apprehended things in my twenties is much different from the way I do now in my sixties. The events didn't change, but the way I remember them does. How does that happen? If we are honest, there is a degree to this 'change' in our remembering that we don't fully understand, but I believe it is because God has been at work within us. He has helped us to see clearly the things in the past that fully belong to the past and those lessons we can take from them that we can use in our present.
If God is light and there is no darkness at all in him, isn't it possible that he will also be able to 'filter out' the darkness of those memories and help us to see only the 'light' that he brings forward in the form of 'lessons'? The cleansing from sin is thorough, but the lessons we take away from those sinful moments is lifelong. The past need not be a thing we dread or 'will away' as though it should not ever be thought about again. In fact, when God helps us to see our past through his eyes, we begin to see just how much he loved us even when we weren't all that lovely! Just sayin!